It is the 7th edition of the COPA Lagos Beach Soccer tournament and for the first time, Arsenal Beach Soccer Club will be among the 8 teams competing for the trophy. In view of this development, a media parley was organised for the new boys alongside the official Arsenal fan base in Nigeria – “Naija Gunners.”
At the press conference, Naija Gunners President, Mr Wole Olagundoye welcomed the team to Lagos, Nigeria. He then called on every true Arsenal fan in Lagos state to come out and throw their weight behind the team and assured the team of their unwavering support throughout the duration of the tournament.
“We’re right behind you guys every single match you’ve got. If you look into the stands, you will see us wearing our Arsenal jerseys and supporting you all the way, Mr Olagundoye said. “We want you to win every single match you’ve got and we will be there urging you on all the way. We are calling on every single Arsenal supporter out there, come out and let’s support our team. It’s time to rally round them and show that Lagos, Nigeria is where the heart of Arsenal fan base is.”
In the same vein, the Arsenal beach soccer team captain, Aaron Clarke had some words for Arsenal supporters in Nigeria. “Personally, this is my favourite tournament. I think the fans are fantastic so I’m very excited for the support that you’re going to give us and you can expect exactly the same. We are going to play spectacular beach soccer and we’re going to move the ball quickly because that’s how we play. The passion you give to us in support, we will give back to you in effort and work rate. So get behind us and I look forward to seeing you guys.”
Arsenal BSC play Gidi Sharks in their final match of the competition, and when asked if they are intimidated by the team put together by FIFA instructor, Angelo Schirinzi, Aaron said: ”Angelo Schirinzi is known worldwide. He’s done a great job not just with Nigeria, but also with Tahiti and Switzerland. He’s a great manager and coach and it is good competition for us. So we’re looking forward to playing against them and it is a test for us. Every game for us is a final and we’re up for the challenge. We’ve come here to take home the trophy so I hope they’re ready.”
Arsenal BSC will be hoping to kick-start their COPA Lagos outing in the best possible way today as they face fellow newcomers, Kebbi BSC.