Sports Correspondent – The News
KARACHI: K-Electric’s Nigerian footballers Wilson Abayomi Segun and Oludeyi Abayomi Sunday on Thursday said that they were really disappointed by the lack of media coverage of Pakistan Premier Football League.
“It’s really sad that there is no media coverage and sponsorship for the Premier League,” Wilson told ‘The News’ here after the K-Electric-Muslim FC match at KPT Sports Complex.
“How will you market your players when your league is not publicised? It’s real injustice with the football of Pakistan which has immense talent,” he remarked.
Wilson, who is playing his first season for K-Electric, added that publicity was a must for promotion of any game. “I observed during my stay here that Pakistan media only believe in cricket. They don’t bother about what is happening in the country’s top league. If you don’t recognise and encourage your players how will they grow in the field?” Wilson said.
While pointing to the empty stands, Wilson said it was due to lack of media coverage that crowd did not throng the venues. “It’s really sad,” he said. “I must say that the talent is there. Teams like National Bank, KRL and K-Electric have good players. Even today we were lucky to beat Muslim FC as they had a few dangerous players,” Wilson said.
He said money should be brought into the game. “Without financially supporting your players, you will not bring any change in your football status,” he said.
About K-Electric’s chances in the Premier League, Wilson said no one could stop them now. “K-Electric are in a strong position and no one can stop us from winning the title this time,” Wilson said.
He also praised his mentor and former Nigerian top player Jay-Jay Okocha through whom he had entered into the deal with K-Electric.
“Okocha was a great player and is my mentor,” said Wilson.
Oludeyi said unless sponsors and foreign players were brought the league would not develop. “It’s really sad that football is not taken by the Pakistani media seriously,” Oludeyi said.
“You will need sponsors for football development and they will come only when the sport gets media coverage. You also need foreign players,” said Oludeyi, who is serving K-Electric despite a hamstring injury.
“Cellular companies and other financial institutions should sponsor football. It is all about sponsorship,” Oludeyi said.
He endorsed Wilson’s views about K-Electric’s winning chances in the season. “We are in a very good position and we will definitely win the title,” Oludeyi said.
This is the second successive season when Oludeyi is representing K-Electric. Last year, he had done a fine job in K-Electric’s second-place finish in the top league.
He also guided K-Electric to a second-place finish in the National Football Challenge Cup in which he was declared the best player.