The President-General, Nigeria Football Supporters’ Club (NFSC), Dr Rafiu Ladipo, has urged Nigeria to ensure that it participated in every Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) tournament.
Oladipo told newsmen in Lagos that it was befitting for Nigeria to have qualified for the 2013 AFCON in South Africa. “It is a long time we last won the AFCON, precisely in 1994 in Tunisia.
“Since then, it has been from one calamity to the other and winning either silver or bronze and later we even stopped winning. “It was so bad that we failed to appear at the last edition of the competition jointly hosted by Equatorial Guinea and Gabon. “That was the height of the disappointment.
A nation like Nigeria should make it its birth right to feature in every Nations Cup,” he said.
Ladipo said that he thanked God that Nigeria had qualified to be part of the continental competition in South Africa from January 19 to February 10.
He advised the team’s technical crew not to allow sentiments in the selection of players for the competition.
“The Stephen Keshi-led technical crew of the Super Eagles should not allow sentiments to becloud their judgment in the selection of players. “The only qualification for any player to get selected should be readiness to put up 100 per cent of his very best, meaning absolute merit.
“They should be players who are ready to make good and big names for themselves and their country. The players themselves should seize the opportunity of being selected to write their names in the good books of our nation.
“So, they have to be committed, determined and patriotic enough to give their best. “The players at the competition should see their call up as an opportunity to further project themselves to the outside world,” he said.
Ladipo warned Nigeria not to be deceived because every country in Africa was a potential winner of AFCON because there were no minnows in football any longer. “Every country in Africa wants to qualify for the Nations Cup, do well and win,” he noted.
The president-general then called on the Nigeria Football Federation to encourage the team with generous allowances and bonuses which should be paid as and when due.
Infantino Reveals How Nigeria Can Host FIFA Competitions
FIFA President, Gianni Infantino last Thursday, in Abuja, revealed how Nigeria can be made a destination for top Grade A football matches and FIFA competitions.
Infantino gave the insight when the Minister of Youth and Sports Development, Sunday Dare took him on a tour of the renovated main bowl of the MoshoodAbiola National Stadium.
The FIFA boss, who was visibly happy with the re-grassed pitch at the stadium, said well-maintained stadia with good pitches were key to hosting grade A matches.
He said FIFA was ready to work more closely with Nigeria to develop the game and host more grade A matches in the country.
“We (FIFA) have to make sure when a country, when a government with the President, the minister and private persons are investing in football, in stadia, we work with them to give something back.
“It’s obvious that stadiums like this (MoshoodAbiola stadium) and others in Nigeria deserve the best quality games.
“They deserve top national team games, top club games and it’s not just about Nigerian football or African football, it’s about global football.
“We are working together to see what kind of new opportunities, competitions we can bring for men and women to fill this stadium and make the heart of the stadium beat for the fantastic spectacle that all of the Nigerian love, which is football,” he said.
Earlier, the minister said the Federal Government will continue to invest in sports development and facilities.
Tidesports source reports that the FIFA President, in the company of the minister, had earlier visited President Muhammadu Buhari at the Statehouse, as part of his engagement.
Why NFF Must Offset Rohr’s Salaries, Bonuses – Aikhomogbe
Former Nigerian goal keeper, Andrew Aikhomogbe has called on the Nigerian Football Federation (NFF) to resolve every outstanding salaries and bonuses owed to the Super Eagles coach, Gernot Rohr before the next World Cup qualifiers against Central Africa Republic (CAR).
Aikhomogbe made this known on the backdrop of the football body’s recent deal with Baba Ijebu.
Although the financial details of the deal was not disclosed, Aikhomogbe in an interview with Newsmen from his base in Cairo, Egypt, stated that the NFF should use this platform to offset Rohr’s salaries and bonuses.
“It’s a big delight to know that the Nigeria Football Federation have signed a deal with Baba Ijebu and this will serve as an opportunity for them to use part of the money to pay Rohr’s salaries and bonuses.
“There is no better time to motivate him than now before Nigeria’s next 2022 World Cup qualifiers against the Central Africa Republic (CAR) on October,” he said.
Enyimba Players Vow To Support Finidi
Enyimba FC Goalkeeper, John Noble has stated that the players of the People’s Elephants will be key to the success of the newly appointed coach of the team, Finidi George.
Finidi, signed a two-year deal with Enyimba and oversaw his first full training session with the team on Thursday after a cameo appearance on Wednesday.
Speaking in a chat with Tidesports source, Noble gave his assessment of the coach in his first session under the manager and believes the former Super Eagles winger has what it takes to lead the team to the next level.
He added that the Enyimba players will be the ones to hand Finidi George his success at the club.
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