Clubs in the Nigeria Premier Football League (NPFL) have been advised to curb a number of conducts of their coaches, players and ball boys during fixtures of the season.
In a memo to the Clubs, titled “Regulating MatchDay Conduct of Coaches, Players and Ball Boys”, Davidson Owumi, the Chief Operating Officer reminded the clubs that relevant provisions of the NPFL Framework and Rules will be invoked to ensure that no individual or group demeaned the public perception of the league.
The memo, he noted was intended to avert the minds of leadership of all clubs to some inappropriate conducts that are tainting the league and bringing the game to disrepute.
It began by drawing attention to dress code of Coaches, some of who the league categorised as “appearing for matches in inappropriate apparels that portray the entire league in bad light”.
Warning that henceforth such Coaches would be charged based on relevant provisions of the rules, the NPFL appealed, “to the leadership
of our Clubs to take interest in the dress codes of their Coaches who sit on the bench especially now that our games are on television”
“Football broadcast requires intentional packaging from arrival of teams to the dressing rooms, to the field, bench and actual play. Let us join hands with our Broadcast Partners to make the league attractive to viewers at home and fans in the stadium”, the memo stated.
It raised a second issue of simulation of injury by players to hold up matches in a bid to run down the clock and thereby denying fee paying fans full value for money and time.
“Football has been accepted as big business with entertainment value and this frequent disruptions rob the league games of entertainment spectacle. It does not encourage fans who have paid money and spent time to watch games”, Owumi observed and urged clubs to encourage their Coaches to adopt fair means of getting results.
The memo also frowned at the resort to hiding match balls by Ball Boys of home teams to confer undue advantage through time wasting when the ball is out of play.
“We have already mandated Match Commissioners and Independent Secret Assessors to eradicate the disappearance act of Ball Boys with balls to the advantage of home teams in the course of a match”.
It said Match Commissioners have been issued a new practice direction of ensuring that the number of Ball Boys and Balls remains the same as it was at the start of the match.
“Match Commissioners are henceforth at liberty to ask the Referee to add every minute wasted by this disreputable conduct”, Owumi disclosed, adding that, “the NPFL would not hesitate to impose appropriate sanctions on offending clubs”.