27.2 C
City of Banjul
Sunday, July 21, 2024


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Under a hazy and heated evening clouds at the Serekunda East Park on Saturday, the Gambia’s football title race was formally decided with Real de Banjul presented with the national football trophy and crown for winning the 2023-24 Baluwo sponsored First Division League. It is their 14th since the team was established in the late 1960s.


Though Real had already won the title weeks ago after collecting an unassailable lead, coronation day was far from a rest day for them. It was the final day of the league and Real had sweat out a 2-1 victory over strongest rival and second place Falcons FC. So, the champions finished on a high.

The Gambia Football league title price has grown in attraction over the years, a far cry from the past when players and clubs enjoyed just fame and pride as champions. Real de Banjul had lived in that era too and though it had struggled to break the gripping hold of the legendary Wallidan FC, the team had won several memorable accolades and provided stiff competition to be recognised as one of the biggest clubs in the country.

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Fast forward, both the league and Real De Banjul have grown in size and status.

The league now is 20 teams and pays a whopping million dalasis to the winner.  However, to ensure all teams cope with the marathon round of matches, the GFF struck a deal with Fintech company Baluwo which provides financial sponsorship that goes to support teams and the administration of the the league.

Baluwo proved to be a reliable partner always keen to extend the partnership every new season since 2022.

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Real meanwhile has led the way in the future professionalisation of the Gambian league and clubs. With its own base and top-class facility, the team regularly exports talents abroad through its many networks and even once appointed a European coach. The team has a formidable structure backed by an impressive financial muscle and organisation fairly unrivalled in the country.

At Saturday’s coronation day, it was hard to miss the massive display of Read de Banjul paraphernalia around the park and the heart-rending sounds of the ever-chanting fans of the champions. ”It is our 14th trophy and the journey for excellence is even hotter now than ever and Real must stay above water, with a   new impetus to aim bigger than ever.

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So, Real cannot fail. This is a very nice feeling and it reflects serious work and dedication by the owners of the club to make Real a great club,” said a fan, with over 40-year love affair with the club.

Watched by club owners Willy Abraham, Bakary Jammeh and Pa Yusupha Samba, joined by ardent fans, invited guests, the coronation as king of the national league for yet another year brought exciting memories for the old and current generations of the White Family.


Represented by Gambia media parent Kerr Fatou which ran a live coverage of the coronation, Baluwo craved to be associated with the very best of Gambian football and coronation day provided a spectacular feast no one can afford to miss.  Officials, volunteers and fans all dorn the Baluwo T-Shirts to celebrate yet another year of partnership with Gambian football.

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