FIFA Approves 30 Nigerian Referees For 2024 Competitions
World football-governing body, FIFA has approved a total of 30 Nigerian referees to be placed on the international lists for the year 2024.
They will be assigned to officiate at age-grade competitions, FIFA Women’s World Cup as well as futsal and beach football.
Among the 30 referees listed are 11 referees, 11 assistant referees, four beach soccer referees and four futsal referees.
In a message conveyed to the Nigeria Football Federation, the 11 referees approved for international duty from Nigeria for next year are: Basheer Salisu, Ogabor Odey Joseph, Olufunmilayo Abigael Alaba, Nurudeen Abubakar, Abdulsalam Kasimu Abiola, Elaigwe Hannah Enekole, Akintoye Yemisi Eunice, Egba Patrick John, Madu Ndidi Patience, Mustapha Grema Mohammed and Abdullahi Abubakar.
The 11 officials approved as assistant referees are: Pwadutakam Samuel, Igudia Efosa Celestine, Abibatu Iyadunni, Muhammad Yakubu, Mfon Friday Akpan, Digbori Tejiri, Usman Abdulmajeed Olaide, Igho Hope Ogenekewe, Terah Kabenda Beauty, Ahmad Mustapha Tijjani and Agbons Faith.
Ukah Ndubuisi Odigomma, Musa Dung Davou, Umuago Paul Akpome and Bello Zuru Alhassan were put on the futsal soccer list, while Ogunmuyiwa Jelili, Fawole Olawale Adeolu, Olajide Olayinka and Rabiu Ahmad were listed for beach soccer.
It would be recalled that no Nigerian referee has refereed at the FIFA World Cup while CAF in the last decade has not considered any male Nigerian referee for the Africa Cup of Nations.
The closest Nigeria came to breaking the World Cup jinx was in 2014 when Peter Egan Edibi, now a retired FIFA referee, was shortlisted for the World Cup in Brazil but failed to make the final list due to what many believed to be high level politics in CAF and FIFA.