The Security and Exchange Commission (SEC) on Sunday emerged the winners of the 2021 Financial Institutions Football Tournament.
The game is organised annually by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) in collaboration with the Nigerian Football Federation (NFF).
SEC defeated the CBN team 5 – 4 on penalties, after the match ended in a goalless draw, at the UJ Esuene Stadium in Calabar.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the 34th edition of the 24-team tournament is to boost understanding and cooperation among financial institutions as well as discover new talents.
The SEC went home with the top prize of N2 million and a trophy for winning the tournament, while N1.5 million was presented to the CBN team by the Governor of the bank, Mr Godwin Emefiele.
Emefiele who was represented by the Deputy Director, Corporate Communications, Mr Samuel Okogbue, stated that All the Financial Institutions Football Competition (AFIFC) which started in 1979, had produced renowned football stars.
He listed Stephen Keshi, Henry Nwosu and Kanu Nwankwo as some of them.
Emefiele added that that CBN would continue to make the football tournament more exciting annually, as part of their Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR).
“Let me assure you that the CBN remains committed to the sponsorship of this tournament.
“We also remain committed to making positive contributions toward promoting football and other sports, such as golf and tennis,” he said.
Assessing the match, ex-Super Eagles player, Friday Ekpo, said he was impressed watching the players exhibit good talents, skills and relationship amongst themselves.
“I believe we can get young and talented players from tournaments like this to build our U-17 and U-23 teams and pass them to the Super Eagles.
”This way, we can have a pool of talented players that will play up to 10 or 12 years in the national teams.
“Although the tactical approaches in the matches were okay, more needs to be done. I encourage CBN to continue with this football promotion and talent hunt,” he stated.
NAN reports that the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) Abuja, had earlier walloped Bubayaro Microfinance Bank Football Team of Gombe by 2-0, in the third place match.
The FIRS Abuja team would be going home with N1 million, while the team from Gombe got N500,000. (NAN)