Executive Fan-Zone: Notable Nigerians And Their Favourite Football Clubs
The exploit of some notable Nigerian football stars in European football leagues across has greatly increased interest of Nigerians and those who are not ordinarily football fans in pitching tent with their favourite Clubs. Though the presence of a Nigerian football star in a particular club or their favourite soccer star or even the Manager could ignite followership for the Club, however, followership of European clubs has no doubt reached enviable height in Nigeria. Thus, very busy business executives, top political office holders are not left out in this fancy trend. We look at some prominent Nigerians and their favourite European clubs in this ‘Executive Fan Zone’.
Mr Jim Ovia
An astute businessman and distinguished former Bank Executive, lots of people will ordinarily argue that this gentleman will hardly have time to watch football with his business pedigree and tight schedule. We have it on good source that Mr Jim Ovia is an ardent fan of Barcelona FC in Spain. His love for Lionel Messi is unwavering, we were made to know.
The Chairman of Heirs Holding and undoubtedly face of UBA Plc till date, even outside any active role in the Bank, Mr Tony Elumelu is another world respected businessman, he hardly has time for himself because of his business timetable which is scattered all around the world. He seldom shows he loves football but many who are in the know disclosed that he admires the likes of Kanu Nwankwo who perhaps many believe made Arsenal Football Club popular in Nigeria, hence his love for the Emirates side is huge.
Dr Mike Adenuga
For long, he has not hidden his love for the biggest Club in English Premiership, Manchester United, he has in that regard entered into business partnership with the Club together with his telecommunication giant, Globacom in the past. Otunba Adenuga hardly goes out to any occasion, thus, he dedicates more time to watch matches of Manchester United when he’s not at work. The Billionaire love for football is
unparalleled, he has shown that right from when Globacom started supporting Nigerian National teams, little wonder he has continued to show his interest in the Ol Trafford giant.
A politician who has over the years shown that he has huge followers with his popular slogan, ‘My People, My People’ while he gets a response of ‘My Governor, My Governor’. The Imo State Governor has shown little or no support for the State’s Local Football Club, Heartland of Owerri but those who are close to him spoke well of his love for Manchester United. He is a lover of English Premiership, he has watched a couple of Man U matches Live at the stadium in England.
Babatunde Raji Fashola
A footballer himself, he regularly plays the game every week at the Eagle Club, Surulere, Lagos, even while he was a Governor of Lagos State. The present Minister of Power, Works and Housing is a staunch believer in Manchester United, he follows them religiously. In the past, he had brought in some stars of the team including Rio Ferdinand to show how much he supports the club. Not only that, Fashola has been at Old Trafford severally to be among the crowd cheering his favourite team.
African richest man, Billionaire Alhaji Aliko Dangote is a philanthropist, his undiluted support for Arsenal prompted him at a time to show interest in buying over the famous English Premiership side but it didn’t work. Though very busy, Alhaji to those who know him very well, he is a specialist in dedicating time for everything he needs to do and gets result. He attends social events, meetings regularly, family issues and still has time to watch his darling side, Arsenal FC. Close source disclosed that, he is still on the trail of buying over the Emirate side in future.
Alhaji Atiku Abubakar
Former Vice President of Nigeria, very rich and has businesses across Nigeria. A politician with huge followers, his passion for Arsenal FC is undaunted and unblemished. On several occasions, he has stormed the Emirate Stadium displaying his Arsenal Jersey to support his team. He shows it excitedly on the social media anytime the Arsene Wenger tutored side triumph especially in any tough encounter. Atiku is a die-hard Arsenal fan.
Former Rivers State Governor and now Minister of Transport, according to many is a jolly good fellow, regardless of the attacks he has got in the political terrain, he controls good crowd anywhere he is. Like Atiku, the former Vice President, Ameachi roars for Arsenal team, he used to watch matches of Arsenal with wife and close associates at times according to source. He also has a record of supporting Nigeria football National teams in the past, the politician has also travelled to have a glimpse of their matches Live.
The Senate President is another Emirates Club supporter, he has not hidden his love for Arsenal FC. On couple of events, he has celebrated the club openly on his social media platform. The former Kwara State Governor, according to source watches almost every Arsenal games unless national assignment calls.
A three-time Commissioner in Lagos State and National Legal Adviser of APC, Dr. Muiz Banire (SAN), to many does not seem to like football, but the love his children exhibit regularly for Chelsea FC has ignited his love to the Club. He is now a follower of the Stamford Bridge club, even though he has little time to watch their matches, he reads the mood of his children to know if the club wins or lose.
A young but creatively endowed business oriented man, the Managing Director of First City Monument Bank Plc is one of the quiet achievers in the banking industry. Of course, he creates time to relax and watch his favourite European Football club, Arsenal. According to information, the advent of Kanu Nwankwo at the Club many years back influenced his love for the style of game played by Arsenal.
Former Minister of Defence and popular politician, Senator Musiliu Obanikoro needs little or no introduction. A huge crowd puller, Obanikoro’s love for Arsenal is well known among his friends, they are fond of mocking him anytime the Arsene Wenger team loses but yet his support for the Club is maintained.
The Managing Director of Air Peace is quite unpopular among the above names but he is a big player in Nigerian business circle at the moment. The Airline he sits atop is doing very well and he is a talk of the town. Onyema is one of the very few fans of London Club, Tottenham FC, though the club could be said to have least of supporters among the top clubs in the Premiership but the current season performance could swell their fan base if they are able to maintain the top three positions they presently occupy.