Undoubtedly, rewards and awards go a long way to encourage recipients (whether young or old) to do more. The same analogy holds in sports and true across the globe. This, perhaps, informed billionaire philanthropist Femi Otedola’s decision to toast the Nigerian national team during the recently concluded 2019 African Cup of Nations (AFCON) with monetary reward for every goal scored by the team.
On Tuesday, July 30, the Nigeria Football Federation had in a tweet, confirmed receiving the sum of $25,000 from the business mogul.
The federation also posted a picture featuring Otedola, Kenneth Omeruo, Eagles’ defender; Chidi Ngoka, Equipment Manager and Enebi Achor, a Team Administrator on its official twitter handle [email protected]
Business mogul Femi Otedola has fulfilled his pledge of $25,000 to the @NGSuperEagles for their one goal against Algeria in AFCON 2019 semi final. Seen here on Tuesday with defender @omeruo22 (r),Team Administrator Enebi Achor (second l) and Equipment Manager Chidi Ngoka (l) pic.twitter.com/YRXkf0xhtE
— The NFF ?? (@thenff) July 30, 2019
Super Eagles finished third at the biennial soccer tournament after defeating Tunisia in the classification match played in Cairo, Egypt. The team had earlier lost 1-2 to eventual champions Algeria in the semi final.
Nigeria returned to the continent’s premier soccer tournament this year after a six years absence.
Reactions from Nigerians
While many congratulated the Super Eagles for finishing ahead of top teams like Cameroon, Ghana, Ivory Coast, Morocco and tournament hosts Egypt, others commended Otedola for his generosity.
According to them, the gesture will serve as motivation for the players and encourage deserving future generations.
One of the team fans, Victor Ayeni, saw the businessman’s gesture as a fulfillment and congratulated the Super Eagles. For winning bronze at AFCON.
Waow..this is great..
Wat a fufilment
May the Lord reward his did..??
— Victor Ayeni (@VictorAyeni15) July 30, 2019
What will the fund be used for?
Nigeria is a soccer-crazy nation of about 200 million population. Nigerians are excited whenever their darling team performed well in a major competition. Hence, it is unsurprising to see Nigerians asking for members of the team to be rewarded for making the country proud.
Many of them urged the team and the NFF to invest the money in a profitable project.
Make sure its invested. Dont let these useless people pocket it
— Kodak Ak™ (@kodak_ak) July 30, 2019
Now that Otedola has fulfilled his pledge to the team, the world now wait to see if Alhaji Aliko Dangote will fulfill his own $50, 000 pledge to the team.
However, it remained to be seen if this patriotic act by Otedola will spur the players and other sports men and women to greater heights in future.