No fewer than 600 teens from 16 countries across Africa arrive in Lagos next week for the biggest youth football fiesta on the continent, Airtel Rising Stars (ARS) to be hosted by telecommunication giant, Airtel Nigeria Limited.
The 7-day long tournament, which will kick-off on Monday, September 16 and end on Sunday, September 22, promises to showcase Africa’s top talents and open a wide window to soccer scouts who are on the lookout for precocious youngsters to mold into future soccer stars.
The event will be attended by top government officials led by the Honourable Minister for Sports, Mr. Bolaji Abdulahi who will personally perform the official kick off of the tournament.
Other dignitaries expected at the continental football showpiece are Chairmen of Senate and House Committees on Sports, leading ex-internationals, as well as 16 Ambassadors from the 16 visiting African countries, among others.
Although Airtel Rising Stars has been on for three years, the Africa Championship category which attracts the most promising teen footballers in Africa to one city was introduced last year (Season two), where the Ghana female and Niger male teams emerged in their respective categories as the Africa Champions.