The President of the Nigeria Football Referees’ Association (NRA), Hon. Alhaji Sani Zubairu has assessed the performance of referees in the first half of the 2023/2024 Nigeria Premier Football League (NPFL commending the dedication, courage, and steadfastness demonstrated by the NRA under his leadership.
Speaking in an exclusive interview, Zubairu emphasized their contribution to the development and improvement of Nigerian football.
He acknowledged the Chief Operating Officer (COO) of the NPFL, Davidson Owumi, as a skilled football administrator with substantial experience and praised the high scores given to Nigeria football referees in the NPFL cadre.
However, Hon. Zubairu recognized the inevitability of imperfections in human activities, including refereeing. He stressed the need for continuous improvement and progression, acknowledging that imperfections in referees, whether in the heart or the head, are inherent to the game.
Zubairu reminded match officials of the significant logistical and preparatory efforts invested by the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) during the pre-season fitness tests, emphasizing the high standard of training and preparations for referees, assistant referees, and assessors.
Addressing concerns about poorly officiated matches and accusations by clubs, Zubairu urged match officials to exhibit exemplary behavior, serving as ambassadors not only for the association but also for the country.
He expressed disappointment in instances where matches were deemed to be poorly officiated, leading to the removal of certain match officials. The NRA President emphasized the importance of self-reflection during the mid-season break, calling on referees to uphold the set standards and avoid questionable decisions that may give rise to accusations of bias on the field.