World Cup: Lagos Viewing Centres Excite Football Fans
Nigeria News takes a look at the attitude of football fans and how bar operators are making more money in Lagos at the ongoing world cup.
This is the best time for operators of restaurants and bars in Lagos. They are making good money from football lovers who troop in on a daily basis to watch their favourite teams play at the ongoing Fifa world cup in Russia.
Almost every restaurant is now a viewing centre for the football fiesta. Besides the restaurants, the Lagos State Government has also created six viewing centres across the metropolis to bring back the nightlife and opportunity for bar operators to make more money.
Since the world cup began on Thursday, there is less vehicular traffic in Lagos. Workers leave office on time to resume at viewing centres.
On Victoria Island, Lagos, football fans troop to the Eko Atlantic City. At the place is a big viewing centre, bar and restaurant to serve the teeming population of Islanders.
On Mainland, business centres and church premises are used as viewing centres. The world cup has always been a big event for Lagos residents.
It was gathered that most people who watch the matches were not really football lovers but those who engaged in betting to make some money.
Perhaps, many of them were disappointed on Saturday when Nigeria played its first match against Croatia. There was no jubilation. Croatia beat Nigeria by 2-0.
Lagos was silent, football fans left the viewing centres disappointed. The Super Eagles are in a difficult situation at present, having lost 0-2.
Earlier, Argentina played 1-1 with Iceland and as it stands, Croatia goes on top of the group D with three points, while Nigeria is at the bottom of the table with no point.
However, operators of viewing centres in Lagos will smile to the bank for the next one month. They sell more drinks and make more money now at present.
As he said, Mr Goddy Ofone, a bar operator at Alausa Ikeja, there is a sudden surge in the number of customers in the last few days.
“I know, it is because of the world cup. I have since increased my supply to satisfy my customers. This is where they eat, drink and watch football now. I have also put another television in the bar. This is not just a bar now, it is also a viewing centre,” he said.
To a bar operator at the Nigeria Union of Journalists Secretariat, Iyala Street, Alausa, Mrs Joy Anthony, many of the journalists visit the secretariat regularly now because of world cup matches.
She said, “Some visit the bar to relax and unwind while some report the matches right from the bar. It has been a good experience because the sales have increased tremendously.”
Speaking, a football lover who works on Ahmadu Bello Way, Victoria Island, Mr Rufus Akanji said, “I visit the Eko Atlantic City more than before since the world cup started. It is not only because of the big screen but the analysis by football fans during the matches.”
According to him, the viewing centre is a nice place to be. “It is like sitting at the stadium and watching the matches live,” he said.