The continual ‘Hiving’ of Nigeria’s Super Eagles

International friendly between Nigeria vs Senegal [Photo: Naij.com]

There is a new word in marketing called ‘Hiving’. It is the continuous debasement of a good brand by its owners in what can be termed self-sabotage.

Though this statement is debatable – the Super Eagles are the only Nigerian football brand that continue to boast intrinsic value – and that is because they have over 100 million enthusiastic supporters, located all around the world.

On Thursday, March 23, the body in charge of this brand, the Nigeria Football Federation [NFF] allowed themselves to be a part of a sham friendly match against the Senegal national football team.

Before Thursday, almost every Nigerian football supporter did not know about English Football League Two football club, Barnet FC, and their ground called The Hive Stadium in London, which a capacity of about 5,000 people.

Match against Senegal was not an emergency

Now, this friendly excursion was not an emergency but the NFF in planning for this event did not think it worthy to understand how the supporters of the team, not at the match venue, would be able to follow their team.

So they were party to a scam carried out byhttps://urlivestream-prod.appspot-preview.com/#!/, who levied enthusiastic fans N500 for a match that was supposed to be live streamed. We thus had people struggling to get a glimpse of the match via Facebook Live and commentary on Twitter, not from the official NFF handle. For the 90 minutes, @thenff had seven tweets, with a solitary photo at the end of the match.

A colleague, Bode Oguntuyi, on Twitter asked the following pertinent questions, “Who picked up the tab for the Nigeria vs Senegal game? It cost money to set these things up.

“The players will get a bonus, Stadium fees, hotel bill, security fees, Senegal fee etc. That’s a lot of money.

“But this game had virtually ZERO income: empty stadium, no TV rights fees, shambolic (fraudulent) online fees. No income!”

And he concluded with this: “So, who funded the game? The NFF is broke. The govt is not involved. Have we “eaten pottage” again?”

Valuing the Super Eagles

In a report on how to value football teams,KPMG noted five indices:

  1. Profitability
  2. Popularity – At least 25% of the 180 million Nigerians are proud supporters of the Super Eagles. “Undoubtedly, there is a strong correlation between on-field success and social media engagement expressed amongst others by the number of Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook followers.”
  3. Sporting potential
  4. Broadcasting rights
  5. Stadium ownership – “A club owned stadium generally means more opportunity to generate revenues. Therefore, ownership of the home ground is also considered in our formula.”

Unfortunately, the Super Eagles do not presently have a home – they are moved around Nigeria at the whim of the highest bidder.

Iterating the value of the Super Eagles using the 15 players, who were in action against Senegal [using transfermarkt.com] showed that the players’ worth was $80.4 million [about N25 billion] on match day and this squad was missing the big names like Mikel Obi, Victor Moses, Odion Ighalo and Brown Ideye. Now, this is the brand that the NFF continues to ‘Hive’!


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