Osaze Odemwingie is a former Pepsi Academy star
The Liberty Stadium, Ibadan will provide a suitable pool to fish for the next generation of truly Nigerian Under- 17 national team players as Pepsi Football Academy Under -15 National Tournament begins Friday, October 5.
The competition which is part of the activities marking the 20th anniversary of the oldest and biggest football academy in sub- Sahara Africa will see Pepsi lads converge on the ancient city of Ibadan from the 14 training centres of the Pepsi Football Academy across Nigeria.
Director of the Pepsi Football Academy, Kashimawo Laloko, said the event is restricted to only youngsters from the academy as the competition will enable the coaches test the skills development levels of their players.
“You cannot continue to train these young boys all year round without providing the opportunity for them to play in a competition else there will be no motivation for them to train and work hard,’’ observed Laloko.
Commenting on the tournament, Consultant to the Academy, Mr. Iain Nelson said: “the U -15 tournament provides the Pepsi Academy the opportunity to showcase the abundant talents in Nigeria which Pepsi, through the Pepsi Football Academy has been nurturing since the past 20 years and have recorded successes with a few of the youngsters over the years such as John Mikel Obi, Osaze Odemwingie, etc who have gone ahead to make it big in professional football career.’’
This is the first time the Pepsi Academy is holding a major tournament in Ibadan and it is expected that football fans in the city will troop out in large numbers to the Liberty Stadium to watch this young boys display incredible skills. The tournament ends on Saturday, October 6.