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Super Eagles Need NFF, Sports Ministry Solidarity To Progress

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Rohr: Super Eagles Need NFF, Sports Ministry Solidarity To Progress

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Super Eagles coach Gernot Rohr hopes that a peaceful coexistence of the Nigeria Football Federation and the Sports Ministry hierarchies will be restored before the New Year in order to give the national team and Nigerian fòotball a condusive atmosphere for further developmentt, reports Completesportsnigeria.com.

Both the NFF and the Sports Ministry have been at loggerheads for over four years following an earlier court ruling directing the current NFF board to vacate office for another one led by Chris Giwa, who contested an election against the current President, Amaju Pinnick.

Rohr says that the imbroglio that ensued has affected the Super Eagles negatively.

“What I wish for the New Year is that we should stop the conflicts between the Nigeria Football Federation and the Sports Ministry,” Rohr told CSN in an exclusive interview.


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“We cannot succeed in a country when we are not together. We can only succeed when we are together. I saw this everywhere. In Burkina Faso, the Sports Minister was attending the team’s matches and he was even paying the salaries of the coaches, paying for trips and bonuses. Same in Gabon with Ali Bongo – he was a fan of football and the Sports minister Rene Demizur, a former player. I miss that here.”

The Super Eagles coach added: “The Federation is fighting to have a good organisation, find money and sponsors for football, they have to do this all alone. On the other side, there is a fight from the ministry. I don’t have anything against the Sports minister.

“I think he is a patriotic man, but I see that they are not together around us and we are a bit alone. When you don’t have solidarity from the politics and football officials, you cannot have it easy but we need that now.”

On how the conflict has affected his Super Eagles job, Rohr said: “We are worried about it because when we heard we could be suspended prior to the Seychelles game, I called the President of the NFF (Amaju Pinnick) and he said all will be well. We kept on with our job, but it affected our minds.


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“Then we hear someone is coming, he’s at the office with Police, but now I think on the surface its okay. But we still don’t have this collaboration. The NFF cannot pay to have these good pitches. These things are done by the government, they have a budget for that.

“We are behind Cameroon now in terms of structures. We are behind Gabon who now have six stadiums. They have beautiful stadia in Bitam and in Oyem. But we need the solidarity.”


By Johnny Edward:



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SPORTS

Buhari appoints Amokachi as SA on sports

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Buhari appoints Amokachi as SA on sports

Former Super Eagles player and Nigerian Football Ambassador, Daniel Amokachi, has been appointed as Special Assistant on Sports to President Muhammadu Buhari.

“I am pleased to inform you that Muhammadu Buhari, President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria has approved your appointment as Special Assistant on Sports,” the appointment letter dated August 17, 2020, and signed by the Secretary to the Government of the Federation Mr. Boss Mustapha, reads in part.

As special assistant on sports, Amokachi is expected to advise the President on all sports matters.

The former Everton of England forward, who was earlier in the year named Nigeria’s Football Ambassador, is expected to mentor youngsters and promote the game at the grassroots.

Nicknamed “The Bull”, Amokachi began his career in Kaduna with Ranchers Bees Football Club of Kaduna, played for Club Brugge of Belgium, Besiktas of Turkey, Everton of England and Colorado Rapids.

He played in two World Cup finals, USA 1994 and France 1998. He was a member of Nigeria’s 1994 African Cup of Nations winning team and won the 2013 edition in South Africa as assistant to the late Coach Stephen Keshi.

Amockachi also won Gold with team Nigeria in the Football event of the Atlanta 1996 Olympics.

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Tennis: Djokovic confirms US Open participation

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Tennis: Djokovic confirms US Open participation

Novak Djokovic confirmed on Thursday he will play at the US Open, ending speculation about his presence at the first Grand Slam tournament since the season restarted following the coronavirus-enforced shutdown.

“I’m happy to confirm that I’ll participate at #CincyTennis and #USOpen this year,” the 33-year-old world number one tweeted.

“It was not an easy decision to make with all the obstacles and challenges on many sides, but the prospect of competing again makes me really excited,” added the 17-time Grand Slam champion.

The US Open gets underway behind closed doors in New York on Monday August 31, with Djokovic arriving in the United States on Saturday to tune up in the Western and Southern Open, which is normally played in Cincinnati but has been moved to New York this year.

His decision to take part is a major boost for the US Open after a host of headline names pulled out.

Djokovic makes his competitive return after being heavily criticized for hosting a charity tennis event in the Balkans in June at which he and a raft of players tested positive for COVID-19.

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Sam Okwaraji: NFF begins process to retire Eagles No.6 jersey

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Sam Okwaraji: NFF begins process to retire Eagles No.6 jersey

The Nigerian Football Federation (NFF) is pondering a move to retire the Super Eagles No.6 jersey previously worn by the late Sam Okwaraji, The PUNCH reports.

NFF President Amaju Pinnick made this known during an interview on a radio programme Sports Salsa, which was aired on Kennis 104.1 FM on Wednesday.

Okwaraji died of congestive heart failure minutes after he slumped during a 1990 World Cup qualifier between Nigeria and Angola on August 12, 1989, inside the main-bowl of the National Stadium, Lagos.

The game ended 1-0 in favour of the Eagles.

“Someone made a proposal about retiring the jersey (No.6) at the start of the year and I think it is not too much for us to do that,” Pinnick said.

“I will forward the proposal to the executive committee for implementation because it has been said already. So, we will see how we can retire that shirt in honour of a great patriot (Samuel) Okwaraji.

“His (Okwaraji) death was very tragic because he was a player who showed dexterity, professionalism and maturity each time he played for the Eagles.”

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