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FIFA Member Association Referees Course ends in Abuja

by Lesley Ngwa
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A five-day, all-encompassing training programme for Nigeria’s intermediate referees will come to an end with a closing ceremony scheduled for the NFF/FIFA Goal Project, MKO Abiola National Stadium, Abuja on Friday.

Classroom sessions for the 40 participants have included group discussions on penalty-area incidents, tactical fouls, recovery strategy, offside, handball and the challenges that confront the men-of-the-whistle. The course began on Monday with a fitness test for all the referees, followed by a clarification of the course objectives and video presentation on modern refereeing.

There have also been on-field sessions with players and mini-matches with players, all with the objective of preparing the intermediate officials for the next step up the ladder to elite level.

On Friday morning, there will be a concluding session on the practical training, as well as a presentation on the new concept for match preparation, before the closing ceremony that commences at 2.30pm.

The overall objectives of the course include identifying, harnessing and nurturing refereeing potentials inherent in the participants, instituting a sustainable development trend through the Young Talent Program, establishing a corp of talented young referees for national and international refereeing programs and ensuring continuous growth and development of refereeing in Nigeria.

The program has been superintendent by two FIFA instructors, namely former FIFA referee Felix Tangawarima from Zimbabwe (FIFA Senior Technical Instructor and COSAFA VAR Project Manager) and Mark Mzengo from Malawi (FIFA Fitness Instructor).

On Sunday, 7th July, another five-day course, this time for Nigeria’s elite referees, will commence at the NFF/FIFA Goal Project, MKO Abiola National Stadium, Abuja. The principal objective of this course, which will also involve 40 participants, is to generally improve the lot of Nigeria’s foremost arbiters.


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