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Nigeria to play Sierra Leone behind closed doors



SUPER Eagles will take on Leone Stars at Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium behind closed doors according to the Nigerian government. Ministry of Youth and Sports Development has insisted that Nigeria’s game against Sierra Leone will be played without fans.

  The Super Eagles will take on the Leone Stars in an Africa Cup of Nations qualifying game at newly renovated Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium, Benin City on November 13.

  The Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 recently gave their approval for contact sports to return in the West African country but behind closed doors.

  The president of Nigeria Football Federation (NFF), Amaju Pinnick, recently stated that fans will be allowed into the stadium but at a reduced seating capacity.

  In a letter, to the Deputy Governor of Edo State, Philip Shaibu, the Ministry insisted that the game will be played without fans in adherence to the directives from the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19.

  “The ministry wishes to bring to your urgent attention that in compliance with the condition of no gathering agreed upon by the ministry and the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 before the Federal Government opened up football and contacts sports, the match between Nigeria and Sierra Leone will not have any audience,” read the letter, as per the Punch.

  “No gathering save for players, match officials and government officials from both countries. Testings must be conducted on all of them prior to the match.

  “The no gathering, no audience for football and contact sports is still in force, which means there shall be no gathering for the Nigerian vs Sierra Leone match, as any violation of this condition may lead to a rollback of the opening up of football and contact sports in the country.

  “The PTF and the ministry are on the same page on this matter and the protocol for clearances rests with both the ministry and the PTF when it comes to staging any sports event in Nigeria.

  “Full compliance with COVID-19 protocols is to be enforced. The PTF is worried about a spike following the second wave of COVID-19 and is considering another lockdown.”

  Nigeria currently lead Group L with six points after securing victories against the Republic of Benin and Lesotho.

  The Super Eagles played friendlies against African champions, Algeria and Tunisia in October as part of their preparations for Sierra Leone.

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