Apple TV’s Ted Lasso: Football and TV Unite Against the Niger Delta’s Chronic Problem

Starring Jason Sudeikis, Hannah Waddingham, Toheeb Jimoh, Brendan Hunt, and many more, the second season of Ted Lasso highlights a deep flaw in sports sponsorship and a long-lasting Niger Delta problem arising from oil extraction activities.

“….Obisanya, away from Greenwood, shrugs off Pogba, he’s still going, he’s left Lidelof for dead, Obisanya shoots, oh, it’s straight into the top corner of the post!!! And he’s scored for AFC Richmond, right in front of the Old Trafford faithful. Starting from the halfway line and through the middle, the Nigerian full-back has sent the ball past David de Gea with the last kick of the game to upset the odds here at the theatre of dreams. Delight for Richmond fans, agony for Ole Gunnar Solkjaer’s men. Manchester United 1, AFC Richmond 2. And this is what dreams are made of.”

Apple TV’s Ted Lasso is Putting Nigeria and the Niger Delta on the World Map

Ted Lasso fans will recognise the commentary quote above as one well made up and has never happened in any of the episodes of the series, at least not yet. However, it would completely make sense to them. A comedy series based on the most famous, most loved sports in the world was always bound to have devoted followers, but it’s the quality of the humour, the thorough production, consistency of performance, and the drama and message that comes with football that has endeared Ted Lasso to lovers of TV.

If you didn’t love the game before, here’s your warning; you just may catch some new feelings once you start seeing Ted Lasso and understanding the innerworkings of a football/soccer club.

sam obisanya
Sam Obisanya (Played byToheeb Jimoh)

Starring Jason Sudeikis, Hannah Waddingham, Toheeb Jimoh, Brendan Hunt, and many more, the second season of Ted Lasso highlights a deep flaw in sports sponsorship and a long-lasting Niger Delta problem arising from oil extraction activities.

Sponsorship is a traditional way for sportsmen and women, and institutions to generate floating money and revenue, but it’s also a way for those companies that pose as sponsors to endear themselves to the thousands or millions of followers of that sportsman or institution.

Oil business has been one of the world’s most lucrative industries for centuries. Many modern sports institutions including Chelsea, Manchester City, Paris Saint Germain, to name but a few, have been backed by oil rich owners.

As with most mining activities, the discovery and extraction of black gold in parts of southern Nigeria has caused more harm than good in many communities. Alongside corrupt company executives, corrupt government officers and indigenous leaders, oil pollution from spillages has rendered several Niger Delta communities inhabitable – and this is what Ted Lasso Season 2 is bringing to TV.

Will it spark the change that we all want to see? We do not know yet. However, it’s a gesture that’s highly welcome, considering there is no platform better to campaign for change than football and TV. In the spirit of the game, in the spirit of goodwill, and entertainment, Ted Lasso is winning at all fronts.

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