Leicester City of England midfielder, Wilfred Onyinyen Ndidi has played a key role in unveiling the new range of kit and jerseys for the Super Eagles and Nigeria’s other national football teams, as the former Racing Genk of Belgium midfielder was seen in several photo-shots to highlight the official public introduction of the country’s latest catchy attire.
Megasportsarena.com learnt that the new range of jerseys, shots, socks, training gear, boots and balls supplied by American sports kit manufacturers, Nike are billed to be launched by the men’s team, Super Eagles on October 9, when they face Cote d’Ivoire during an international friendly in Austria.
Ahead of that game, and a similar fixture versus Tunisia four days later at same venue, the rare privilege of officially unveiling the kit to the public glare came for Ndidi on Sunday, with Super Falcons’ captain, Asisat Oshoala and youthful striker, Rashedat Ajibade also in the photo-shoot, alongside Udinese of Italy defender William Troost-Ekong and Villarreal of Spain winger, Samuel Chukwueze.
They all combined in Sunday’s virtual event sanctioned by Nigeria Football Federation (NFF), which had earlier disclosed that the new range of jerseys for all the country’s national team’s is the next step by their official kit-sponsor, Nike to wow the globe with aesthetic excellence, as they did with the current range that was launched for the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia.
The soccer body also informed that the new kit would have been unveiled earlier this year but for the outbreak of coronavirus, which caused the Super Eagles’ matches billed for March and June to be shifted, thereby preventing the players from wearing the jersey.
Additional information from independent sources also confirmed that various international and local retailers have received the Nigeria 2020 football kit collection at their stores, where the Vapor Match versions will be available to buy starting from next week.
The report added that the Eagles’ home kit has been spotted at a store in South Korea, alongside the away kit, after they were both presented by Nike at a glamorous brand event in New York, USA back in February, alongside the latest attire for South Korea and America.
NFF’s head of marketing, Alizor Chuks disclosed some months back that finishing touches were put to the designs with observations, comments, suggestions and inputs from officials of the soccer governing body, who fully briefed Nike’s designers with details of Nigeria’s preferences.
They are now hopeful that the new range will be as successful as the outgoing ones, for which Nike received three million orders prior to the release of the jerseys into the market on 29th May 2018; with more purchases made on the first day of the sales in London, 1st June 2018.
It was a Friday and the eve of a high-profile pre-World Cup international friendly between the Eagles and England’s Three Lions at Wembley, ahead of which Nike shops and various retail outlets ran out of stock within an hour of the jerseys going on display.
That provided a hefty boost to the NFF’s expected earnings from the three-and-half-year deal reached with the American sportswear company, which was billed to fetch $3.75m (743m Naira) during its three-and-half-year partnership and a $500,000 (99m Naira) bonus for reaching the 2018 World Cup.
Among other perks to the bargain, the contract was reportedly worth $750, 000 (148m Naira) in its first year and expected to rise to $1million (198m Naira) each year from 2016 till 2018; after which a fresh package was made public on November 22, 2018 at Stephen Keshi Stadium, Asaba just before a friendly game between the Eagles and Cranes of Uganda.
NFF’s second vice-president, Mallam Shehu Dikko, while describing the deal that was said to be worth $3.75m (743m Naira) and runs till 2022 as the best in Africa, enthused: “When you see how much we will earn for the basic fees, for the sales, for the bonuses which we will declare how much we earn from this deal at the end of the year when we publish our accounts.
“We are very happy because this new agreement comes with good money on annual basis, more supplies, improved qualification bonus for our teams, door-to-door delivery of kits, royalty for the NFF on jerseys sold and it has now been expanded to include our women national teams.”
Back then, Nike’s regional sports marketing director for Africa, Tina Salminen had promised that the new design would be rolled out before the 2020 Olympics, which had been scheduled for July/August, until COVID-19 set in, but that declaration has now eventually come to pass; as was confirmed via various posts on social media by the national team’s media units.
The official statement that came via @NGSuperEagles read: “Dope FireFlag of NigeriaFlag of NigeriaFlag of Nigeria 2020-2022 Kit. Out Now! #SoarSuperEagles #Team9jaStrong;” while @NGSuper_Falcons added: “Dope FireFlag of NigeriaFlag of NigeriaFlag of Nigeria 2020-2022 Kit. Out Now! #SoarSuperFalcons #Team9jaStrong.”
Ndidi also chipped in his own expression via social media, as the vastly-improved lad, who lined out for the second weekend running as a central defender with his club and helped them to yet another victory in the EPL, gleefully wrote: “Excited to share my new Nigeria kit with you. Flag of Nigeria Eagle @nikefootball #youcantstopus.”