Initiator of Pitch Awards, Mr. Shina Philips (left) Odion Ighalo and NFF Second Vice President, Shehu Dikko, at last year’s awards
Super Eagles Captain, John Mikel Obi, Victor Moses, Carl Ikeme and others have been shortlisted for various awards at the Nigeria Pitch Awards, scheduled to hold at the Le Meridien Ogeyi Place in Port Harcourt on May 28.
According to the initiator, Mr. Shina Philips, Port Harcourt was selected after much deliberation by a committee, which agreed that the Garden City was the best venue for the fifth edition of the award ceremony.
“The committee had a long and serious deliberation and finally decided that Port Harcourt would be the best location for the fifth edition of the awards.
“The Garden City has been a centre of sporting activities for a long time and a home for the Super Eagles,” Philips said.
Philips thanked all the voters and members of the Nigerian media for their support, saying, “Sports Editors and journalists have been our voters for the last five editions and they have done this conscientiously without receiving any form of wages,” Philips stated.
Victor Moses of Chelsea FC, Wilfred Ndidi of Leicester FC and John Mikel Obi of Tiajin Teda will be battling for the top prize at the award ceremony. Nominees for other categories are: Goalkeeper Of The Year: Carl Ikeme, Wolverhampton Wanderers; Ikechukwu Ezenwa, Ifeanyi Ubah FC; Dele Ajiboye, Plateau United FC.
Defender Of The Year: Leon Balogun, FSV Mainz 05; William Troost-Ekong, Bursapor FC; Shehu Abdullahi, Anothosis Famagusta FC; Midfielder Of The Year: John Mikel Obi, Tianjin Teda; Wilfred Ndidi, Leicester City FC; Victor Moses, Chelsea FC;.
Striker Of The Year: Victor Moses, Chelsea FC; Anthony Okpotu, Lobi Stars FC; Odion Ighalo, Changchun Yatai; MVP (Men) in the Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL), Ikechukwu Ezenwa, Ifeanyi Ubah FC; Stephen Odey, MFM FC/FC Zurich; Anthony Okpotu, Lobi Stars FC; MVP (Women) in the NWFL: Charity Rueben, Ibom Angels; Rasheedat Ajibade, FC Robo; Amarachi Okonkwo, Nasarawa Amazons.
Coach Of The Year: Fidelis Elechukwu, MFM FC; Gernot Rohr, Super Eagles; Kennedy Boboye, Plateau United; Club/Team Of The Year: Super Eagles, Plateau United FC, MFM FC; Referee Of The Year: Ferdinand Udoh, Adebimpe Quadri and Ogabor Joseph.
The Best State Grassroots Development Programme: Lagos State, Rivers State, and Delta State; Football Friendly Governor Of The Year: Godwin Obaseki, Edo State; Emmanuel Udom, Akwa Ibom State; Akinwunmi Ambode, Lagos State.
Sam Okwaraji Award For Commitment To Nigerian Football: Shehu Dikko, 2nd Vice President, NFF; Amaju Melvin Pinnick President, NFF; Chief Ifeanyi Ubah, Chairman, Ifeanyi Ubah FC; Corporate Sponsor Of Football Award: Aiteo Group, Nigerian Breweries Plc and Coca Cola Plc.
Football Journalist Of The Year (Print): Johnny Edwards, Complete Sports; Tana Aiyejina, Punch Newspapers; Olalekan Okusan, The Nation Newspapers; Football Journalist Of The Year (Radio): Godwin Enakhena, Top Radio FM; Olawale Adigun, Top Radio FM; and Tony Bekederemo, Brila FM.
Football Journalist Of The Year (Tv): Austin Okon-Akpan , Channels TV; Godwin Enakhena, LTV/SportsSplash; Mozez Praiz, Supersport; Queen Of The Pitch: Rasheedat Ajibade, FC Robo; Reuben Charity, Ibom Angels; and Asisat Oshoala, Dalian Quanjian.