The quiet town of Akanran came alive on Saturday when Ilaji Football Club, a newly established Football Academy situated within Ilaji Stadium and Resorts Center, played host to Shinning Stars FC from Ido Local government.
The friendly encounter was reminiscent of the Principal Cup of the olden days which was characterised with youthful exuberance, breathtaking skills and frenzy cheers from the local spectators who thronged the Ilaji Stadium and ceaselessly cheered up their local team.
At the end of the regulation time, Ilaji Football Academy defeated Shining Stars FC by two goals to nil. The goals were scored on either side of the match.
During a post match interview, the Chairman of Ilaji Stadium & Resorts Center and the owner of Ilaji Football Academy, Engr. Dotun Sanusi, expressed his satisfaction with the quality of Mach displayed by both teams as well as the vociferous supports given to the teams by the spectators.
He urged well meaning individuals in the state to invest in grassroot football with a view to rekindling and reviving the lost glory of the Principal Cup stating that by so doing they will not only be helping our society to be crime free but will also help the supposedly the country’s future leaders achieve their life-long ambition of being useful to themselves as well as their immediate society.
During their own addresses, Oyo State Commissioner for Education, Prof. Adeniyi Olowofela and his counterpart from the Youths and Sport Ministry, Bar. Yomi Oke, both of whom were in attendance during the explosive encounter stated that considering the level of sporting infrastructure seen at Ilaji Stadium & Resorts Center, they expressed optimisms that the future of grassroot football in Oyo State in general and Ona-Ara LG in particular is very bright.
They lauded Engr. Sanusi’s efforts at engaging positively our secondary school students which they describe as legendary and exemplary.
In his address, the leader of the visiting team who is also the Executive Chairman of Ido Local Government, Hon. Wahab Oladejo, expressed his happiness at the sporting infrastructure being put in place in Ilaji Stadium and Resorts Center as well as the outcome of the match.