Diary of an mad journo: CERTIFICATE FOR BABA


By Nduka Orjinmo

I thought that the sight of the General manager of Dolphins Football Club passing on tactical instructions on to the bench in last Sunday’s match at home to Gombe United would have been the most ridiculous thing I would have seen over the weekend-seeing that Balotelli did not play for Manchester City on Saturday-

It’s not that Stanley Eguma is a Jose Mourinho, but receiving instructions from the GM who is not even more than a month old in football management -I don’t even know his name-made the game more interesting as Kennedy Chinwo is not a midfielder and so doesn’t see much of the ball to entertain me.

Not that this action from Mr. I don’t know your name GM is the most hilarious thing I saw over the weekend, I mean, I had seen the unfriendly underside of Kola Anubi after his short dropped off, I had seen fans miraculously appear at a closed door session of a Sharks match, and I had also seen the attacking pair of George Amakiri and Victor Ezeji.

I also enjoyed my bit of egg on the face, when the floor manager of SuperSport whisked my interviewee away from my recorder and unto the fine lenses of his television camera.

But alas, the most ridiculous thing I saw last weekend happened at the Liberation stadium.

At half time and into the second munch of a badly fried bun, I sighted-not the GM this time, he made his appearance much later, not the ultra fans occupying the south stand-I don’t know why people demean them by calling them area boys-, but I sighted Mustapha Babadidi on the touchline.

Not that his presence there should have raised any eyebrows seeing that he hugged the lines all afternoon after failing to penetrate the Dolphins defence, but there he was Babadidi, camera lights flashing, video rims rolling and he Babadidi smiling.

In his hands, he held what looked like a certificate.

Certificate of what I asked myself? Birth certificate seeing that he was 15 last year turned 16 now.

But why would the ministry of health bring the certificate to the field? I quickly dismissed that.

Driving licence, I asked again? But Baba-yoruba word for father not the intention here- is only 16, the law says you must be 18.

I threw that away with the miserable bun-bad frying oil-so what is that certificate Babadidi is receiving?

Certifate of land ownership? Have the Ultras decided to bribe Babadidi with a plot of land in Port Harcourt so that he won’t score against Dolphins.

I dismissed that also, it would be easier for Sharks to win the league than for the legendary Port Harcourt C of O to be dashed.

So I watched the match and went home, as curious as the Anfield Cat about what Babadidi received.

But then news filtered in today, as pleasant as the news of Dolphins AWOL star Abdujaleel Ajagun returning from Bangladesh after an unsuccessful trial, that what Babadidi was actually receiving was a certificate for best player award for the month of January from three top Nigerian blogs that report the league.

You can’t fault the award, can you? I mean he got three goals in January and he is officially the youngest to have scored in the league.

But wouldn’t a plaque have been better? Or better still, a birth certificate for Baba?

You can follow Nduka Orjinmo via twitter. @orjinmonduka
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