Ileya football tourney kicks off in Kwara South as 20 clubs jostle for honours

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In a move to get the youth engaged, united and also empowered, Kwara South Football Association is staging the maiden edition of ‘Ileya Football Competition’ for teams in Kwara South.

The competition, which debuted on the 2nd of June 2024 is being played at the football pitch of Government Secondary School, Omu- Aran.

The competition, tagged ‘Asoju Oba Cup,’ is being sponsored by the lawmaker representing Oke-Ero/Irepodun/Ekiti/Isin Federal Constituency at the House of Representatives, Hon. AbdulRaheem Tunji Olawuyi (Ajulo-Opin).

It was introduced to engage the youth, while also serving as a tool to unite the people of the constituency, as well as discovering talented players from the region.

The organizers also see it as a way to discover hidden talents, promote them, and also ensure that any successful player can have their name traced to the competition.

While giving his address, the Chairman of Irepodun Football Council, Comrade Joel Emmanuel said that the competition can serve as a unifying tool among communities’ in the Local Government Areas of the constituency, and how it would somehow mitigate the security threat in their locality.

“An idle hand is prone to devilish acts. That is why we are bringing the youth together so that we can engage them and make them busy meaningfully”, he said.

“Hon. Ajulo-Opin is supporting this initiative as a way of bringing people together, meeting people we have seen for a while and also meeting new people from different communities, and this will ensure good relationships among everybody.”

The representative of Hon. Ajulo-Opin, Hon. Olanrewaju Agas, while interacting with the press said, “the major aim is to see our children, students, among these youths to be in the European league, to change the fortunes of their families and community. Our focus is to help them build and shape their future.”

He also talked about the versatility of football as it can serve different purposes, one of which is bringing people together, as a way to get them engaged, and also a way to foster security.

“One major beauty about sports is that it knows no territory an ethnicity, once you bring about this kind of competition, it makes people know each other the more, and also see themselves as one”

Agas also implore the participants to come forward, show their skills, do their best, and that the Ajulo-Opin is willing to render help to any player that has the potential.

The competition was also seen as a development which people have been clamoring for in a long time, and will also serve as a motivation to players and club owners.

According to Fabiyi Tobiloba, who is one of the coaches in the competition, applauded the brain behind the competition.

“This competition is a good development to Kwara South as a whole, as it will help motivate the players, coaches and even the spectators that will come around to watch the matches to be played. And we appreciate the donor for bringing this to us, it is a very good one.”

Mr Adeoye Adelekan Emmanuel, who is the coach for Unique FC Omu Aran, also commended the committee and everyone involved in putting the competition in place at the right time that is needed.

“This is a very great development in Kwara South, and it is brought to us at a very crucial time that will be helpful to us. To me, this tournament will not only unite all of us, but even go a long way in eradicating the issue of insecurity in this region because people will be engaged and when they are, the issue of social vices and insecurity will be solved. “

20 teams, grouped into four are participating in this year’s maiden edition.

They are Fortunate FC, Landmark FC, Ajokogun FC, Arandun FC and Ajulo-Opin FC, in Group A. In Group B are Ajimati Travels, Ipetu FC, Shooting Stars, Alonje Loko FC and Omu-Aran FC.

Makodi FC, Golden Stars FC, Unique FC, Aran FC and Isanlu FC are in Group C, while Omido FC, Olupo FC, Future Stars, Young Boys and Oko United are in Group D.

The winner will receive a cash payment between 150,000-200,000; first runner-up get between 100,000-150,000; while the second runner-up get between 60, 000-100, 000 respectively.

There will be individual awards to the Best Coach, Most Valuable Player, Best Goal Keeper, Best Behaved Team, among others, and each award will be accompanied with a cash prize of 10,000.

The grand finale of the competition will come up after the Ileya festival.

Also present at the event was the Olomu of Omu-Aran, Oba Abdulraheem Oladele Adeoti, who did the official kick off to the game.

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