Rivers State Governor,Chief Nyesom Wike has advised the leadership of the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) to intensify preparations for the 2018 World Cup in Russia as Nigerians will not accept failure at the Mundial.
Speaking during a courtesy visit by the President of the Nigeria Football Federation at the Government House Port Harcourt last Monday , Governor Wike said that exiting the World Cup at the group stage will be unacceptable to Nigerians.
According to Governor Wike, “If you fail to advance beyond the group stage, don’t bother to return. Find excuses to stay there in Russia. Nigerians expect the best from the Super Eagles. That is why the NFF must intensify preparations.”
Governor Wike urged the management of the NFF to close ranks and work in unity for the development of football in the country.
“There must be disagreements, but these disagreements should be platforms for development. Disagreements should not destroy the place. It should make NFF stronger “, he said.
The governor said that the state government is using football as a source of empowerment for the youths.
He said football is a unifying factor in the country, as it douses tension whenever the nation is engaged in international sporting events.
Governor Wike commended the NFF for the notable improvements in the country’s league, charging the NFF to develop it to the level where teams can win on the strength of their capacity.
Earlier, the NFF President, Amaju Pinnick said that the NFF was in the State to thank Governor Wike for providing the foundation for the qualification of Super Eagles for the World Cup.
He said the journey to Russia 2018 started in Port Harcourt after the Super Eagles defeated Swaziland.
“The governor created the right environment that led to the qualification of Super Eagles for the World Cup. This journey started here in Port Harcourt. Today, Port Harcourt has become a destination of choice “.
He formally invited Governor Wike to be part of the country’s delegation to the World Cup, saying that the country will benefit from the sporting experience of the Rivers State Governor.
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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