Cash crunch may deny NFF foreign coach

Amaju Pinnick, NFF Chairman

Pius Ayinor

The Nigeria Football Federation may be forced to settle for a Nigerian coach for the Super Eagles next month after a proposed company to foot the bills of an expatriate manager “developed cold feet” according to an report.

It was gathered that the recent leadership tussle in Nigerian football circle may have stopped the oil company from paying close to $2m spread over two years for the NFF to hire a top-rated foreign coach.

An insider said, “The oil company was ready to give the NFF close to $100,000 a month to take care of a top foreign coach and his assistants, but since the latest round of instability in the Nigerian football polity, the company has developed cold feet.

“The NFF on their own do not have the cash to pay for such a coach and the government through the sports minister has made it very clear it will not pay for a foreign coach.

“That could well have informed the NFF’s recent announcement that the vacant Super Eagles top post will be taken up by the best candidate whether he is local or foreign.”

But the NFF president, Amaju Pinnick, told The PUNCH on Monday that the discussion with the company was still holding properly.

“There is no problem,” he said,

Sunday Oliseh’s sudden departure in February just before the Africa Cup of Nations qualifying games against Egypt forced the NFF to draft Samson Siasia on an interim basis for the two games played in Kaduna and Alexandria. Pinnick announced after Oliseh’s departure that Nigeria would settle for a coach from abroad but the sports minister expressed worries about financing the foreign coach project.

 Former Kano Pillars and Enyimba coach Salisu Yusuf is in charge of the team  for the two friendlies against Mali on May 27 and Luxembourg on June 1. Yusuf was an assistant to both Oliseh and Siasia.

 The NFF is expected to name  a new Eagles coach next month.

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