Super Falcons coach, Kadiri Ikhana
By Olawale Ajimotokan
Coach Kadiri Ikhana has demanded for an enhanced bonus package for the Super Falcons from the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) that will be bring the females at par with the Super Eagles.
Ikhana is to be formerly unveiled Wednesday in Abuja as the Falcons chief coach after he was given a four-year contract by the Nigerian federation.
He was appointed to build a new team after the Falcons broke many hearts under the stewardship of Uche Eucharia.
But at his maiden team talk with Falcons Tuesday ahead of his public presentation, he said that the Falcons deserved to be treated with respect because “as women they are the mothers of the nation”.
Ikhana, who was a member of the epoch making Super Eagles squad that won the Africa Cup of Nations in 1980, asked the NFF to review the current match bonus of the Falcons to reflect what is paid to the Eagles.
At best the Falcons go home with $1000 (about N158, 000) compared to the jumbo $3000 (about N474, 000) which is normally paid to the Eagles as takeaway winning bonus.
“They (Falcons) are the mothers of the nation. Under the right circumstances, they deserve to be celebrated and accorded due respect. With motivation, they will return to winning ways and once again make the nation proud. This is a national team and I see no reason why they should not be treated likewise the male team. They deserve to be placed on parity with the Eagles,” Ikhana insisted.
He seemed to be right on track in his quest for a new order as the Falcons rode to training Tuesday in the Super Eagles Marco Polo bus, which was a departure from the old practice where they normally cramped in an 18-seater mini-bus.
Ikhana, who had previously coached Enyimba of Aba and Kano Pillar in the local league, opened his camp with 53 players in preparation for a two-legged qualifier against Zimbabwe for a place in this year’s African Women Championship finals billed for Equatorial Guinea in November.