RangersFootball fans in Enugu State were excited to witness football live commentaries after fifteen years of waiting to see the outside broadcast van at football venues in the state.

Three home games played by Rangers International FC in the 2015/2016 football season have been covered live by Radio Nigeria Coal City fm 92.9 to the excitement and admiration of fans in Enugu and neighbouring states.

Rangers FC versus Wikki Tourists of Bauchi ended 1-0 in favour of Rangers. Rangers also captured maximum points when they beat Akwa United FC of Uyo 2-0. Enyimba FC of Aba suffered the same fate, when the flying Antelopes consolidated their lead in the log, with a resounding 3-0 win over them. At 17 points in week 9, Rangers seem to be finding their feet after many years of targeting the top spot of the Nigerian league table.

Correspondent Anthony Okofu went to town to feel the pulse of the people on the return of sports commentaries to the schedule.

James Okonkwo  in Coal Camp Enugu, says he was at Nnamdi Azikiwe stadium Enugu to watch the matches because of promos by Radio Nigeria Coal City FM 92.9 that they would carry Rangers home matches live. He was pleasantly surprised to hear world class commentators, Andrew Nnebedum and Willie Nwanyanwu on commentaries. Alex Nwokedi in Owerri, Imo State was so excited that he dumped the distracting EPL to follow Rangers and Akwa United game covered by Radio Nigeria. Chris Nchita in Abakaliki, Ebonyi State says “the glory of Nigerian football has been restored with the innovation by Radio Nigeria”. Clement Umoh was travelling from Calabar by ABC transport, when he monitored the commentaries between Wikki Tourists and Rangers. “It was unbelievable” he said. “We can now know more about our home based players through such commentaries by Radio Nigeria Coal City FM, Enugu”.

He recalled with nostalgia the discovery of great players like ‘Chairman’ Christian Chukwu, Stephen Keshi, Emmanual Okala, ‘Mathematical’ Segun Odegbami, Samsom Siasia, George Finidi and others, through world class commentators like Late Ernest Okonkwo, Late Sebastian Ofurum, Late Ishola Folorunso, Kevin Ejiofor, Richard Asiegbu, Emeka Odikpo, ”those days are back. Our home based players will rediscover themselves through hard work and discipline”

“We are grateful to Radio Nigeria for making this happen” said Vincent

Nwankwo, another football fan from Oji River in Enugu State. “The standard of officiating by our local referees will improve. The country’s rating by FIFA will also improve”

The Zonal Director of Radio Nigeria South East zone, Ike Okere had mandated the sports and outside broadcast department of the zone to rebuild sports reportage by emphasizing local content, through which talents at all levels could be discovered by sports administrators.

Such encouragement attracted approvals from Enugu State Ministry of Youth and Sports, management of Rangers International FC, Enugu State FA, and Stadium Management Committee, to allow Radio Nigeria Coal City FM 92.9 provide live coverage of Rangers home games in the 2015/ 2016 league season, to bring back excitement to the local league through broadcasting and encourage participation of fans in all the games.

“The success of this initiative by Radio Nigeria will depend on sponsorship from sports enthusiasts, corporate bodies and businessmen” Mr Ike Okere pointed out. He appealed to the target market to encourage sports coverage and take advantage of the mileage of the station, to advertise their goods and services. He promised to offer most encouraging terms to anyone interested in partnering with the zone.

Rangers FC will host Mountain of Fire FC of Lagos on Sunday 10th April 2016 at Nnamdi Azikiwe Stadium, at 4: 00pm. Team of world class commentators from Radio Nigeria Coal City fm 92.9 will be on ground to cover the match. Apart from being aired on the terrestrial platform, it will be audio streamed live on and from 4:30pm.

Anthony Okofu is Head, corporate development, research and statistics Radio Nigeria South East zone.



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