BY JUDE OPARA, ABUJA
Soccer loving Nigerians will have the opportunity of watching live matches of the forthcoming FIFA U-17 World Cup to be staged in Chile. This is because the Nigerian Television Authority (NTA) and StarTimes have concluded arrangements to bring the live pictures in the comfort of their homes.
Addressing a press conference yesterday in Abuja, Chief Executive Officer of TV Enterprise, Maxwell Loco said Nigerians will have the opportunity of watching the national U-17 side, the Golden Eaglets both on the sports channels of StarTimes and the terrestrial channels of all member stations of the Broadcasting Organization of Nigeria (BON).
He explained that the period will be exciting because of the past achievements of the Golden Eaglets who have won the championship four times, a reason he argued stands the team out as the best of all Nigerian national teams.
“Severally the U-17 team has brought honour and glory to the country with victories four times and we are hopeful; that in the tradition, the present team will make Nigerians very proud, we have absolute faith in the team and the Nigerian youth. Therefore, we at StarTimes will collaborate with some TV stations in Nigeria to take the games to every Nigerian home.”
Loco further stated that most of the matches would be played within two time belt beginning from 7-8 pm and 10-11 –pm, a time he described as prime time when most people would have returned from their daily activities, and that all the matches would be aired in High Definition (HD) channels.
According to him, another innovation is the replacement of the Repeat Broadcast with Highlight Shows for 25 minutes which would be aired the day after each live match broadcast of StarTimes and all BON affiliated stations.
In his own contribution, the General Manager Sports, NTA, Abdulrahman Ibn Mohammed assured that all matches involving Nigeria will be aired live on all NTA stations on the terrestrial channel while the rest will be on NTA channel on StarTimes.
Also the Manager Sports, African Independent Television (AIT), Tunde Orebiyi stated that the station will broadcast all matches involving Nigeria on its terrestrial channel but explained emphatically that such will not extend to the cable channels.
The Chile U-17 World Cup will kick off on October 17 with Nigeria playing in group ‘A’ alongside Croatia, USA and host nation, Chile.