The Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) have announced dates for this year’s Federation Cup tournament, the oldest club football competition in the country.
Under a new title sponsor AITEO, Nigeria’s leading energy solutions company, the 2017 edition of the tournament is starting at least two months behind schedule but the Federation said it was to make the competition – without a sponsor for eight years – bigger and better.
According to a release by the Federation’s spokesperson Ademola Olajire made available to www.aclsports.com on Thursday, the men’s competition will start on Wednesday August 16 with round of 64 games while the final will hold on October 8. The women’s final will be staged six days earlier.
“The draw for the second round matches will take place on Friday, 18th August while the matches will come up on 30th August. The draw for the third round matches will be conducted on 31st August, while the matches will be played on 13th and 16thSeptember.
“The draw for the quarter –finals and semi –final matches will hold on 14th September, with the quarter –final matches to come up on 20th and 23rd September. The semi –final matches are scheduled for 27th September and 4th October,” the release added.
As part of innovations to restore the glamour of the oldest football competition in the land, matches that end in a draw, from the first round, would not go into penalties as has been the case over the years.
Draws for the round of 64 will hold on Friday in Abuja with draws for further rounds conducted after the conclusion of the previous round.
NPFL side FC Ifeanyiubah are the defending Champions of the Nigerian Federation Cup and are in the pot for Friday’s first round draws alongside their development side, FC Ifeanyiubah Feeders.