FACT CHECK: Do These Images Show A Flooded Stadium In Nigeria?

Brad Sylvester | Fact Check Reporter

A post shared on Facebook purportedly shows a severely flooded sports stadium in Nigeria.

Verdict: False

The pictures, which were taken in 2007, show a soccer stadium in Sheffield, England, that flooded.

Fact Check:

Featured in the Facebook post are two pictures of heavy flooding on the field of a stadium that has blue seats. The caption reads, “Photo news: The one and only Aquatic Stadium in Nigeria reconstructed by Oyo State government led by a PDP Governor, Gov. Seyi Makinde.”

The post references Seyi Makinde, a member of the People’s Democratic Party who serves as the governor of the southwestern Nigerian state of Oyo. The state government recently renovated the Lekan Salami Sports Complex in Ibadan, the capital city of the state, the Nigerian daily newspaper The Punch reported. The newly-renovated stadium was unveiled for a Sept. 1 soccer match, according to a video of the match shared by the Oyo state government’s verified Facebook page.

The images in the Facebook post, however, do not show the Lekan Salami Sports Complex experiencing flooding. A reverse image search revealed they actually depict a stadium in England. (RELATED: Does This Video Show Flash Floods In Kenya Washing Away Cattle?)

The first picture showing a wide shot of a flooded soccer stadium can be found in a June 2007 article from the Daily Mail titled, “Bring on the sub: Sheffield Wednesday’s pitch submerged by flood water.” The article explains the photo shows Hillsborough Stadium in Sheffield, England, after it flooded when nearby River Don surged past its banks that year. Metro.co.uk also published a similar photo in June 2007 of Hillsborough Stadium flooded in which the same owl logo can be seen on the seats.

The second photo can be found posted in January 2017 on OwlsTalk, an online forum dedicated to discussing Sheffield Wednesday, the soccer team that plays at Hillsborough Stadium. Sheffield Wednesday’s mascot is an owl. The January 2017 OwlsTalk post, titled “When Sheffield Wednesday’s Hillsborough ground got flooded,” features several photos showing “just how mad that flood was when Hillsborough got all flooded out.”

Brad Sylvester

Fact Check Reporter
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