Amaju-Pinnick

Duro Ikhazuagbe

President of the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF), Amaju Pinnick, revealed wednesday that Super Eagles’ World Cup 2018 qualification bonus of $2.8million (about N1.08billion) is almost ready for the players to collect.

Speaking in Abuja wednesday, Pinnick who also doubles as CAF Executive Committee member, insisted he was not the kind of president of the federation who will shy away from speaking about money at the Glass House.

“I am not one of the presidents of the federation that don’t talk about money. We had a meeting with the team in November and we signed agreement with them that 30 per cent of the FIFA money which is $2.8million will be paid to them.

“The money we agreed with the players is almost 100 per cent already for them to collect whenever they come. We met a couple of state governments and even made presentation to FIFA in raising the money and I can assure you that the money is 100 per cent certain for them to collect,” the NFF chief stressed while fielding a question on the finances of the Glass House ahead of Russia 2018.

Pinnick said that there was nothing to worry about concerning Eagles preparations for the World Cup in Russia.

“We are not facing any challenge, and I would like to thank the government of Nigeria for creating the enabling environment for us to strive,” he noted.

“The government has given us all the support and more importantly create that stability we always sought in football. The government has really done well by giving us financial support to reach our goal. I thank the Minister of Sports (Solomon Dalung) who has been a major supporter of our programme.”

He also revealed that he was in charge of Eagles preparation for the Mundial “I am totally in charge of the World Cup and I don’t delegate functions that are crucial because the desire of every Nigerian is for Super Eagles to do well at the World Cup. I speak to the technical officials, especially the coaches everyday, and I am also in touch with the technical committee.

On the goalkeeper problem facing the team following the leukaemia ailment that sidelined dependable Carl Ikeme, Pinnick revealed plans to dispatch goalkeeper trainers to all the national team keepers including Dele Alampasu, Ikechukwu Ezenwa, Daniel Akpeyi and the Spain-based goalkeeper Francis Uzoho for one-on-one training ahead of the World Cup.

He described the planned friendly between Nigeria and England at the Wembley Stadium on June as a decent effort to size up Eagles before the World Cup kicks off. The last friendly for the team is planned for June 6 against Czech Republic.

“The tickets for Nigeria/England match is almost sold out and it will be a good game. The match would play at the Wembley on June 2, and from then we would go to play Czech Republic in Austria on June 6, before moving to Russia for World Cup,” Pinnick concluded.