COD United Football Club of Lagos and the Community Sports Trust of English Premier League club AFC Bournemouth have agreed a partnership that will commence with local and foreign soccer camps for young and aspiring footballers. The CEO of COD United Shola Opaleye said he is very excited about the partnership and the many possibilities it presents to both clubs.
“We are very excited about starting a partnership with yet another team in the biggest league in the world, the English Premier League. We are particularly excited to be working with AFC Bournemouth’s Community Sports Trust, the community department at a club we share the same values with and which has a similar story to ours. We started our journey in the lowest cadre in Nigerian football and in six years, we were within a few games of joining the Nigeria Professional Football League. AFC Bournemouth were also playing in the lower rungs and within a few years, they have made it to the English Premier League. It is an attestation to the spirit and determination of both clubs. We have both achieved a lot in a short while because we have both been undaunted by challenges and focused on moving forward against all odds. With this partnership, we want to work together to develop young players and coaches through training and camps in Nigeria and England. After working with Bolton Wanderers when they were in the Premier League, we are happy to be working with another team in the Premier League. We are quite pleased that these clubs who are run in accordance with the best global practices arehappy to work with our club. It shows we are doing something right. We are also very excited about the opportunities and the exposure this partnership provides for young Nigerian boys to make their dreams come true. In all, it is a partnership we are very excited and proud of as a club and we look forward to an exciting future.”
The first activities leveraging the partnership are soccer camps for young and aspiring footballers in Lagos and England in July and August respectively. The Lagos camp will hold at the City Turf grounds of C.O.D United led by coaches from AFC Bournemouth CST while the UK camp will be an intensive nine-day camp held in England which will also feature test matches against English teams.