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Naija Super 8: Rivers United tackle Bendel Insurance as Enyimba face Heartland in zonal qualifiers
- Enyimba, two-time CAF Champions League champions, will face Heartland in the maiden edition of Naija Super 8
- The tournament's zonal qualifiers will also witness major games like Rivers United vs Bendel Insurance and Remo Stars vs Shooting Stars
- Naija Super 8 zonal qualifiers kick off from June 23-25 after which the six winners of the play-offs will qualify for the Naija Super 8 finals where they will be joined by two wildcard entries
Rivers United, current champions of the Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL), will face this season's unbeaten team Bendel Insurance in the south-south zonal play-off at the maiden edition of the Naija Super 8 competition.
This comes after the 12 clubs participating in the Naija Super 8 zonal qualifiers were unveiled on Friday, May 26, in a ceremony, which took place at MultiChoice Studios in Lagos and broadcast live on SuperSport.
Enyimba tackle Heartland, Remo Stars vs 3SC
In the South East geo-political zone, two-time Champions League winners, Enyimba of Aba will tackle Heartland FC of Owerri, while Shooting Stars (3SC) will duel with Remo Stars for the right to fly the flag of the South West geo-political zone.
The ticket to represent the North Central geo-political zone at the finals will be contested by City FC of Abuja and Lobi Stars of Makurdi, which had the zone's highest vote tallies in the voting exercise.
Meanwhile, the ticket for the North West geo-political zone is a head-on collision between Kano Pillars and Katsina United, while Yobe Stars and Gombe United contest the slot for the North East.
According to Flykite production, the competition organizers, all the participating clubs were selected based on the votes polled by fans from April 10 to May 12, which was computed by Deloitte.
The two teams with the most votes from each of the six geopolitical zones were selected to face off in the zonal qualifiers.
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The Naija Super 8 tournament is in partnership with MultiChoice Nigeria and sponsors, MTN, DStv, Hero Lager, MoniePoint, Pepsi, and Custodian Life Assurance, some of whose representatives were in attendance at the unveiling ceremony.
Also present were representatives of the Nigeria Football Federation, Nigeria Professional Football League, Nigeria National League, and the football clubs.
Eight ex-internationals to mentor teams
The event also witnessed the official unveiling of former Super Eagles stars who would serve as mentors for the tournament.
They include Julius Aghahowa, Mutiu Adepoju, Ike Shorunmu, Tijani Babangida, Jonathan Akpoborie, Garba Lawal, Austin Eguavoen, and Nigerian league veteran Victor Ezeji.
The event also witnessed electrifying performances from Mavin Records artiste, Crayon.
The Naija Super 8 zonal qualifiers kick off from June 23-25 at Eket Township Stadium in Akwa Ibom state.
The six winners of the play-offs will qualify for the Naija Super 8 finals to be held from July 7-16 at the Mobolaji Johnson Arena in Lagos, where they will be joined by two wildcard entries.
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Clubs to win over N100m As Naija Super 8 Football Tournament Debuts
Earlier, Sports Brief reported that Naija Super 8 is set to bring many innovations into club football with world-class coverage and analyses.
All the matches will be broadcast live on SuperSport and each team participating in the tournament will earn N3 million per game.
The runner-up trophy comes with N9 million, while the winner of the Naija Super 8 tournament gets N25 million. The best player in every match wins N250,000.