VENTURES AFRICA – English Premier League side Arsenal Football Club have cancelled their planned tour of Nigeria in what may be seen as a big blow to football fans in Nigeria as well as business enterprises hoping to make use of the opportunity.
Announcing the development on its website Arsenal.com, the London club stated that the “decision is as a result of complexities linked to the planned game against Nigeria on Saturday, August 5th in Abuja.”
Arsenal’s marketing director Angus Kinear explained the complexities stating that: “bringing a top-level club to an international market is always complicated and logistically challenging. With the proposed match planned for early August, we could not get comfortable on everything needed to satisfy our requirements, so we have reluctantly taken to postpone the team’s visit.”
However, Kinear pledged the club’s long-term commitment to Nigeria.
“We have a huge and large following in Africa, and we are sorry the team will not be visiting this summer. However, we are a long-term commitment to Nigeria and we are already making plans for a visit next summer.”
It was not all doom and gloom as the club’s marketing director insisted that other activities are being lined up in conjunction with Arsenal’s commercial partners in the country.
“… we also have some exciting planned activities with our commercial partners in Nigeria- Emirates, Airtel and Malta Guinness, which will kick off in the next few weeks,” Kinear said.