NFF signs new improved contract with Nike till 2026

Nigerian Football News By: Ikponmwosa Umweni | 21/11/2018

The Nigeria Football Federation signs a newly improved contract extension with the leading sportswear giant NIKE in Asaba on Tuesday till 2026 with both parties describing the new contract as the ‘real deal’.

The American kit company had teamed up with NFF in April 2015 following the departure of another global brand but a new agreement is for four years at the first instance, with an automatic renewal clause that will take the marriage to the end of the 2026 FIFA World Cup finals in Qatar.

Amaju Pinnick, the NFF president said at the contract-signing ceremony inside the Stephen Keshi Stadium he said: "We need to know where we are coming from to be able to appreciate where we are now. A few months after we came on board for our first term in office, I was told that we needed to buy jerseys for the National Team to play a football match. That was how bad it was because the kit sponsor at that time terminated the contract.

"So, I made contacts with some highly connected persons and worked hard to convince NIKE to come on board. We were coming from a weak position but they made the agreement flexible for us.

"Today, we are happy we teamed up with NIKE because after we qualified and participated at the FIFA World Cup in Russia, the company was the one chasing us for a new improved contract.

Chairman of the NFF Marketing, Sponsorship and TV Rights Committee, Shehu Dikko, who is also the NFF 2nd vice president, said Nike’s faith in Nigerian football and its encouragement all the way has been heartwarming.

"They never stopped believing in us and in our teams, and after they conducted their due diligence on everyone involved in the running of the NFF, they were very eager to sign this new deal as far back as when we returned from the World Cup in Russia. But we kept telling them to give us some time.

 "We are very happy because this new agreement comes with good money on annual basis, more supplies, improved qualification bonus for our teams, door-to-door delivery of kits, royalty for the NFF on jerseys sold and it has now been expanded to include our women national teams.”

Tina Salminen, NIKE’s Sports Marketing Director (African Football), expressed delight at the signing of the new contract: "NIKE is very, very happy with its relationship with Nigeria.

"The jersey we designed for Nigeria for the FIFA World Cup won the award as Best Designed Jersey and was hugely popular. It has remained a source of reference in NIKE meetings and events ever since.

"Nigeria is one of the big teams in world football and we are happy to get them to sign a long-term contract.