lørdag 28. februar 2009

Football (soccer for those far far west)

Today was the day when I would finally go to a local football match. I had wanted to do this for a while but my dear husband is not a football fan, the security responsible told me that a Nigerian Football Stadion was no place for a woman to be alone - so then I had to invite some of my male colleguaes. Luckily - three og them were interested enough to join me. Thanks to Niels, Arne Gunnar and Stein Erik!

Before we left for the game we had a short briefing with security coordinator. He informed us that we would have to bring a police escorts, two policemen. The would be discrete - and not draw any attention towards us. We would not need that being the only four white ones in the stadium area! We were also lucky that the assigned driver came with us to watch the match - so the pick-up after the game were easy. We were also priced for our ability to dress "unattractive" - which I believe was meant to be a good thing.
On the picture: Arne Gunnar, Niels, Sylvester and Stein Erik.

The match was played at Onikan Stadium Ikoyi, Lagos so it was only 15 minutes drive from the office. We arrived shortly after 3pm and took a walk towards the area with seats. The tickets were in two price ranges - 50 Naira or 100 Naira. We went for 100 Naira seats so we could sit in the shadows and watch the game. We were seated all the way back so we could have a good view and some chill from the fresh air.

When we walked towards our seats we came across what I assume must be the VIP area. Leather chairs and tiled steps. It must have been fantastic some years ago.
Well the staion was worn down, and it was small for a match in first division - it seems to be to little room for the players to play! But it was still fun - and some variations from other saturday activities.

Todays match were between First Bank of Lagos and Benin Insurance of Benin city. When we arrived I asked the locals who would win - they all replied Benin. But the better team won - First Bank 1 - 0.

And the condition the played under were the same for both teams. A grassfield without grass in central areas for the game, uneven, slightly bumpy ground that made the ball bounce in peculiar ways from time to time. But some of the players were falling to easy and staying on the ground to long. If I had been the referee I would have carded them for "filming".

Not to far from us - actually just in front of us to the left, were two trompet players and three men to play the drums. And they played and played for the complete 2 X 45 minutes! Amazing stamina! And they made it look so easy. Watching the game while playing trumpet.

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