The idea of the NFF Cup in the line of the English NFF Cup was first invited by Football enthusiasts towards the end of the Second World War. They were enthralled by the growing number of football clubs in some parts of the country, particularly Lagos, Calabar and Ibadan.

In 1945, the Governor-General of Nigeria Arthur Frederick Richards (later Lord Milverton) donated a beautiful silver trophy for competition among clubs in the country. The trophy was called the Governor's Cup.

In 1954, when the three regions of Nigeria were created (West, North and East) and Regional Governors were appointed for the Regions, it became obvious that the appellation of the competition had to change to word the confusion that was bound to arise since the Regions had started their own local competitions for their various Governor's Cup.

In 1954, therefore the Nigeria Football Association (NFA) which has also been formed held a general meeting to decide on a change of name for the competition. Thus, the outcome of the meeting held on Monday February 25, 1954 saw a new name for the competition. The NFA simply name it the Nigeria Football Association Cup (FA Cup).

The inaugural competition featured eight teams all from Lagos which already had a organized competition called Pa Mulford Memorial Cup. The eight clubs were; Marines (later called Nigeria Port Authority); Corinthians (a team of the labor department); Zik Athletic Club (ZAC); Post and Telegraph (P&T); Public Works Department (PWD) United African Company (UAC), Lands and Survey Club and the Railways.

Marines won the maiden edition beating Corinthians by 1 - 0.

In 1946, the first team outside Lagos jointed the competition. The team Abeokuta Town selected was led by owe school teacher called Mr. E. E. Efiok.

In 1948, other town teams entered the competition - Port-Harcourt, Calabar, Jos, Kano, Aba and Kaduna. Lagos team more established the others continued to dominate by winning the trophy for the first eight years of the competition. Kano XI was the first team outside Lagos to win the cup in 1953 when they beat Lagos Dynamos by 2 -1. Thereafter, other teams found the nerves to contest supremacy with Lagos. For two years after Kano victory no Lagos club ever got to the finals of the competition.

After 1960, perhaps the most intriguing development of the NFF Cup was the presence of Plateau (the team from Jos) in the finals of the competition. In 14 years, the Plateau representatives got to the finals nine times and could not win the cup at any time.

However, in 1970, the silver cup originally donated by the Governor-General in 1945 was replaced with a Gold Trophy donated by the Nigeria Football Association (NFA). The Gold Trophy was first won by Electric Corporation of Nigeria (ECN) now PHCN.

Between 1970 to date saw a great deal of improvement and innovations which has the desired glamour to the NFF Cup in Nigeria.

Samson Siasia Becomes Super Eagles' New Coach

Expert Author Joseph Ezie Efoghor
The Nigeria Football federation has finally appointed Samson Siasia as the Coach of the Super Eagles. He was appointed after series of debate as to who was better between himself and his former team mate Stephen Okechukwu Keshi.
The two candidates that eventually became the preferred ones for the job of coaching the national team were both members of the 1994 African Nations' Cup winning team and the USA '94 World Cup, with Stephen Keshi as the captain of the team.
The emergence of Samson Siasia is good news to so many soccer pundits in the country as so many people had actually been clamouring for him to be appointed head coach following the Super Eagles' abysmal performances in the past 10 years. The fortunes of the team began to dwindle since 1998 World Cup in France where they lost by a scandalous 4-1 to Denmark in the 2nd round of the tournament.
Since France '98 the team has had over 8 coaches - Bora Milutinovic, Bonfere Jo, Shuaibu Amodu, Festus Onigbinde, Christian Chukwu, Austine Eguavoen, Berti Vogts, Las Lagerbach, etc. The fortunes of the team have not improved much as none of the coaches had been able to make Nigeria win the Africa Nations' Cup Gold trophy ever since their last one in Tunisia '94.
Nigeria is blessed with array of soccer talents; unfortunately, indiscipline, internal squabbles and lack of commitments have made it impossible for the team to achieve much in the past decade. With the emergence of Siasia as the new coach, it is hoped that this problem would be addressed as he is known to be a strict disciplinarian.
Besides, Siasia has the charisma to move the players into giving their best for the country. He was able to achieve success in the 2005 World Youth Championship in the Netherlands with an U-20 team that was made up of mainly home based players. We also saw the commitment put in by the 2008 Beijing Olympic team players under him.
We hope that when the contract is finally wrapped up, either the NFF or Coach Siasia himself should be able to choose an assistant that would work effectively and harmoniously with him to advance the Nigerian football to the next level. Stephen Keshi has said that he's willing to work with him in the interest of the Nigerian football.
We wish he is able to bring back the discipline, team spirit and commitment needed for the success of the team. He should also not fail to inject fresh legs into the team and make invitations into the team competitive. Once he is able to bring in these basic ingredients, he is bound to succeed more than the previous coaches that have handled the Super Eagles.
Joseph Ezie Efoghor is a sports analyst with special interest in football, wrestling, golf, boxing, athletics and long jump. For more of his articles visit