The founder of Pathway Sports and President of Team Nigeria UK, David Doherty has shown interest to become the President of the Nigerian football federation (NFF).
Doherty who is a football administrator, entrepreneur, ex-footballer, FA coach and consultant on football matters laid out his plans for Nigerian football development.
Below is his press release.
Good morning, ladies and gentlemen. My name is David Doherty, and I am a Nigerian football administrator and sports enthusiast.
As someone who grew up during what we can fondly refer to as the golden years of Nigerian football, both in terms of intentional planning and measurable impact, it is disheartening to see the steady decline of the game that has brought so much honor to the country and joy to Nigerians in a now rapidly-fading past.
Before our very eyes, the things we took for granted, such as qualification for age-grade international competitions, a robust domestic league which served as the production line for some of our country’s best footballers, and a deliberate football policy which was the roadmap to development, are now things that we only remember with fond memories.
Rather than simply complaining about what is wrong and hoping for solutions to fall from heaven, I have decided to contribute in my own small way to arrest the slide into total oblivion, help to reverse the course of a rapidly sinking ship, and join hands with others of like mind to usher in an era greater and better than the glories of the past.
Consequent upon this, and after deep introspection borne of personal conviction that this is the right way to go and extensive consultations with people of like minds, I have decided to put my candidacy forward for the office of President in the Nigerian Football Federation’s election coming up later in the year 2022.
In aspiring for this noble office, there are three key questions that require honest and critical answers if we sincerely want a change in the status quo:
a) What is the state of American football at the moment?
b) Where do we see our football going in the short, medium, and long term?
(c) How do we get to that desired destination in the shortest possible time while avoiding all the human and natural obstacles dotting our path to the Promised Land?
Only a man (or woman) with sincerity of purpose would be able to answer question (a) above without minding whose ox is gored. To answer (b), we need a visionary mind with rare foresight who’s tested and not easily distracted by pecuniary gains. Finally, only a person with strength of character, self-discipline, integrity, and proven administrative acumen can successfully power to a desired outcome.
The problems confronting Nigerian football are many but not insurmountable. Corruption, lack of vision, poor planning, poor leadership, poor infrastructure are all symptoms of a broken system, and if we frontally face and fix the broken system, the symptoms will gradually fade away.
To fix the system, we need practical ideas that have been tested and can be trusted. We must invest in human capital development. We have to provide an enabling environment and a level playing field for the fair contest of transformative ideas so that we can always put our best feet forward at all times. This will ensure that Nigeria is always represented by her best 11 in every activity.
It is my desire to make football a positive and inclusive experience for everyone involved in the game, and I have a vision of Nigeria being the number one black footballing nation in the world. My mission is to chart a path that will bring this vision to reality.
As a result, my Action Plan for Nigerian Football Development will be built on four pillars: recruitment of talent who share the vision; regeneration and re-engineering of domestic leagues from grassroots to elite level to ensure that the best talents have the right pathways to reach their full potential; collaboration with local and global partners for the advancement of the game; and construction of infrastructural facilities while following a sustainable model.
A more formal working document is being prepared by my team as we speak, and I count on your support and encouragement as we go about trying to change the face of Nigerian football forever.
Thank you for listening.
The NFF election is scheduled to take place in September 2022 when the tenure of the current Amaju Pinnick-led board expires.