Ayobami Adekunle, Ebuka Anumba and Ayobami Jegede have emerged as the top three players to represent Nigeria and join the Africa XI to train at London in September 2018.
Rexona, Nigeria’s leading deodorant and antiperspirant brand recently hosted the final twenty two (22) players from the Rexona Street to Stamford competition at an exclusive dinner event put together to celebrate the young talents.
The Rexona “Street to Stamford” competition which commenced in May 2018, saw the participation of young football enthusiasts across the country make entries with their preferred position of play both on and off the field for an opportunity to train at London.
Following the digital draws which was witnessed by representatives from the Consumer Protection Council, National Lottery Board and Lagos State Lottery Board, a short list of 100 players were invited to the Rexona Street to Stamford Africa XI camp at the National Stadium, Surulere to showcase their skills, talents and compete for a spot in the top three.
Speaking to the media on the competition, Head local coach, Rexona XI Street to Stamford Academy, Kennedy Boboye said “I am impressed by the talents on display at the academy and it is a pleasure to work with such determined group of young players.” He added that the few days spent training the players, selection of the final twenty-two and down to the final three was intense, as it shows the potential of growth in football development within the country. He however urged the players to use the opportunity afforded them to “grow and follow their dreams.”
Head International coach, Chelsea FC Rexona Academy, Laurence Griffin said despite being his first experience in Africa, he was impressed by the passionate football tradition of Nigerians and the level of commitment by players in the Rexona Academy. He further stated that “the opportunity afforded the players by Rexona and Chelsea FC is once in a lifetime. It is our hope that the experience and training exposure, would help develop and shape these players to leaders who can also pass on such experiences to their local communities in improving them.”
Laurence added that the selection of the final three was a decision that wasn’t easy due to the enormous talents in the academy but with the support of the local coaches, they were able to select the final three who would represent Nigeria in London.
Toun Adegbite, Category Manager, Skin Care and Deodorants, Unilever Nigeria, congratulated all the players for their commitment and level of determination throughout the trials at the academy. She added “that Rexona as a brand promises not to let people down by building the confidence of consumers in their daily routines, hence, the campaign which is aimed at helping young talents in football build their confidence in achieving their dreams of training at the highest level.”
She further stated that the Rexona Street to Stamford platform is “aimed at inspiring youths across the country to dream, work hard, and be prepared at all times as opportunity always meets those who are ready”.
Rexona Ambassador and former international football star, Austin Jay Jay Okocha thanked Rexona for such a platform created for young vibrant footballers to aspire for greatness and urged other corporate organizations to take initiative in ensuring the growth of football talents within the country. He also advised the players to be resilient and focused on the game as they have the spotlight on them from prospective scouts who aim to make them better.