Huge interest in Nigeria friendly

Lionel Messi in action against Nigeria at the 2010 World Cup
Messi faced Nigeria during the group phase of the 2010 World Cup - now he will be playing them in Bangladesh

Organisers of the Nigeria-Argentina friendly next month have been inundated by requests for the game to be played in Bangladesh.

The Bangladesh Football Federation (BFF) says fans and sponsors are keen on grabbing a piece of the action.

The two teams will play a friendly match at the Bangabandhu National Stadium on 6 September.

The match has been described as the biggest ever football event to be held in Bangladesh.

World Player of the Year Lionel Messi will lead a star-studded Argentina team to Dhaka while Nigeria are also sending their full-strength squad which has promoted the huge interest.

"We are overwhelmed by the response from the fans. Sponsors are showing a lot of interest," Anwarul Huq, chairman of the match organising committee said.

Local media reported that the BFF were selling the rights of everything associated with the match - from an official dinner to the bus bringing the teams to the venue.

A local event management firm has bought the rights for the dinner where a maximum of 250 seats will be available for supporters to eat with officials, sponsors and the teams.

There will also be an auction for supporters attending the dinner where they can buy different souvenirs and autographed pictures and shirts of famous players.

The BFF are also closing in on a deal with a local sponsor, who will brand a vehicle carrying Argentina fans to follow the team bus carrying Messi and his team mates, officials said.

Twice world champions Argentina are hugely popular in football-obsessed Bangladesh where their former captain and coach Diego Maradona is worshiped like a demigod.

Top Stories