World Footballers’ Union, FIFPro, Bans Players from Signing Contracts with FC IfeayiUbah

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Duro Ikhazuagbe

The global umbrella body for players, Fédération Internationale des Associations de Footballeurs Professionnels, (FIFPro), has advised professional footballers not to sign contracts to play for NPFL side, FC IfeanyiUbah due to what it calls repeated non-payment of salaries and other contractual obligations.

The Nnewi-based club that is one of the only two privately owned teams in the Nigerian top flight, was recently added to the updated list of clubs that players shouldn’t sign for In Africa.

The body announced it updated decision on debtor clubs via its twitter handle yesterday.

FIFPRO is the worldwide representative organisation for 65,000 professional footballers across the world and usually helps fight claims belonging to players especially as regards wages.

Last July, FIFPRO advised professional footballers not to sign for some African clubs because of repeated non-payment of salaries

The clubs listed back then were Club Africain of Tunisia, Chabab Rif Al Hoceima of Morocco, Lusaka Dynamos and Lusaka City Council Club both of Zambia and Black Forest FC of Botswana.

Seven months later, the body released an update via its official twitter handle and went on to include FC IfeanyiUbah and a Zambian side FC Nkana because of repeated non-payment of salaries.

FC IfeanyiUbah is owned by oil and gas businessman, Ifeanyi Ubah. At inception, it was one of the best managed teams in the Nigerian pro rank, contracting players from several countries including Brazil.

It also entered into partnership with West Ham of England and went into an ambitious project of building its own stadium.

All attempts to get a top club official to speak on the ban from FIFPro failed while Chairman of the League Management Company (LMC), Shehu Dikko could not be reached as he was away in London attending the football stakeholders summit.

Meanwhile, Nasarawa yesterday fought back from a goal down as early as the fourth minute and earned maximum points that lift them out of the drop zone of the NPFL

Israel Abia fired Rangers ahead through a direct free kick in the fourth minute but the home side won a penalty almost immediately, which Abubakar Lawal converted in the seventh minute, while Abdullah Abubakar got the winning goal in the 52nd minute.

With this result, Warri Wolves are back in the relegation zone together with Abia Warriors (both with same points as Rangers but with inferior goal difference), while Jigawa Golden Stars and Adamwa United complete the list of teams in troubled waters of the Nigerian top flight.