HOW TO BECOME A LICENSED FOOTBALL PLAYER AGENT IN NIGERIA: know the Official Status and Knowledge Required from an Applicant

 Here in Nigeria, clubs don’t yet allow players to use Agents in the negotiation of contracts. So if you intend to pursue a career as Licensed Football Player Agent, then you should be looking at the global market. It’s more about  transferring Nigerian or West African players to clubs abroad.

It isn’t an easy task though,  to negotiate some of these players contracts abroad and you can’t imagine how many of them do fail in the process. In fact, only few of them are usually successful. And it can be very stressful for both the agent and his player. Most times, the agent is at the receiving end; with accusations and counter-accusations.

I can tell you by experience, it can be very stressful. An agent lives on commission usually paid by the player when the contract scales through. So first, you most work to win the player’s sincere trust,  that all you are doing is for his benefit.

A player needs an agent as most professional will tell you, life is much more complicated without them and no major transfer deal can scale through without their involvement. A football player agent isn’t just somebody who for a fee, introduce a player to a club and help him negotiate a contract. He can be much more.

 These days, an agent take care of most matters regarding the player’s well-being. He can be on top of his legal  and tax matters, as well as investment, media relations, endorsements from brand… An agent is in for a great career if his player who wholly trust him, becomes a star and playing for a top flight club. Take for instance the case of John Olatunji Shittu and his player John Mikel Obi.

However, all your effort transfer a player may become useless if you don’t have a valid license from Nigeria Football Federation (NFF)’ you may not be legally recognized in the negotiation process and you might not earn your commission legitimately.

Until 2001, agents were licensed directly by FIFA, not anymore, licensing are now being issued by the respective association of the applicant’s country of nationality.

To apply for a License in Nigeria, the person must send his application together with his resume and pay the enrollment fee of about N10, 000 to NFF. There are  criteria NFF will surely consider.

·         An Applicant must not hold a position as an official, employee of FIFA, CAF, NFF, LMC or any organization connected to the mentioned establishments and entitles.
·         An applicant shouldn’t have any criminal record for financial or violent crime.
·         An applicant must hold a Nigerian International passport and vastly traveled abroad.
·         An applicant is preferred to be a graduate of Law, Business Administration, Marketing or Physical education.

Written Examination:
If your application satisfies the required criteria, NFF will invite you to take a written examination. NFF may hold examination twice a year; the exact dates is determined by FIFA. The exam is usually a multiple choice questions to test your:
·         Knowledge of current applicable football regulations, especially in connection with the transfer market.
·         Knowledge of civil law (Basic principles of personal rights) and Contract law (Law of obligations).

Professional Liability Insurance:
If a candidate passes the examination, then he is required to have a Professional Liability Insurance made out in his own name and to pay a premium of N75, 000 each year. The insurance covers any risk that may arise from the player Agent’s activity.

Code of Professional Conduct And Issue of License:
Once all this is settled, the candidate signs the code of professional conduct after he has paid the licensing fee of about  N1 million. Finally, the License is issue to him that officially allow him to work as an agent in organized football world wide.

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