Two England-based players, Alex Iwobi of Arsenal and Wilfred Onyinyen Ndidi of Leicester City will get the privilege of previewing the next set of Nigeria’s national team kits and a forthcoming ceremony in London.
Footballlive.ng gathered that, in a move that is similar to when Iwobi and Ndidi were joined by another Leicester star, Kelechi Iheanacho is modelling the Super Eagles’ jersey for the 2018 World Cup, the players will again play key roles in checking out the new line of designs.
This was confirmed Thursday by the information department of Nigeria Football Federation (NFF), which disclosed that Iwobi and Ndidi have been invited to preview the new jersey on the sideline of high-profile meeting with American sports kit manufacturing company, Nike.
Sports minister, Barrister Solomon Dalung is at the head of a delegation that is already in London for a series of meetings with Nike, aimed at optimizing their contract extension that was signed in November.
Dalung will attend the first of the meetings on Thursday evening at the UK office of Nike in London, along NFF with president, Amaju Pinnick and second vice-president, Mallam Shehu Dikko.
Nigeria’s soccer body explained that it is normal for the world’s leading kit manufacturers to invite top officials of their clients to preview and authorize a new design before the said piece is produced and launched.
However, Iwobi and Ndidi may not have the pleasure of being among the first set of players to don the new look jersey, as the NFF statement disclosed that it will only roll out ahead of the 2020 Olympic Games in Torkyo, Japan – which means Dream Team 7 will take the debut outing.
The NFF statement further disclosed: “The meetings would also dwell on merchandising, as well as previewing and authorization of a new kit design for the national teams to be launched in the summer of 2020.
“NIKE officials confirmed to thenff.com on Thursday morning that Super Eagles’ stars Alex Iwobi, of Arsenal FC of England, and Leicester City FC’s Wilfred Ndidi, have also been invited to attend the previewing of the design to give player options and suggestions.
“They added that they are delighted to have Nigeria’s Minister of Sports attend the meetings.
“NIKE and the Nigeria delegation will also firm up strategy to set up outlets across Nigeria to ensure NIKE kits and other merchandise are more available to fans across the country and the world.
“It would be recalled that NIKE’s special design for Nigeria for the 2018 FIFA World Cup, which sold out on the streets of London hours after it was released onto the market on the first day of June last year, was previewed and authorized by the NFF bigwigs in Year 2016.
“The current designs would remain until the 2020 Olympics when the new designs would be launched.
“Production would only begin on the new design after the previewing and authorization, and would be launched in July 2020, on the margin of the Olympic Games in Tokyo.
“It would serve the various National Teams between 2020 and the early months of 2022, before a new design would be released for the 2022 FIFA World Cup, after the Super Eagles must have qualified.”