Olawale Ajimotokan in Abuja
The Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) has sent congratulatory messages to former Nigeria international, Emmanuel Ndubuisi Egbo, who has become the first Nigerian and African to lead a European club to a top tier domestic title.
With three matches left in the Albanian top flight, KF Tirana coached by former Nigeria goalkeeper Egbo has an unassailable lead and thus guaranteed the diadem. In the event, he has also led the team to the UEFA Champions League.
On Monday, President of the Nigeria Football Federation, Mr. Amaju Melvin Pinnick sent a message to Egbo: “I congratulate you and wish you only the best. This is also to say that we are very proud of your wonderful achievements.”
In his response, the former goalkeeper wrote: “Thank you Sir, I appreciate it so much. We thank God for his Grace and goodness. It is not my achievements; it’s our achievements as Nigerians, Africans and the Black race. Glory be to God Almighty. Na God win Sir. Thank you again for the best wishes.”
In a letter dated 20th July 2020, NFF General Secretary, Dr. Mohammed Sanusi praised Egbo for the feat and expressed the view that the coach has laid down a marker for fellow Nigerian coaches to go out and accomplish brilliantly.
“It was with a huge sense of pride that the NFF and the entire Nigerian Football family learnt of your exemplary achievement as the first-ever Nigerian, Black and African Coach to win a major European League, as you have steered KF Tirana to the Albanian top tier championship with few matches left in the on-going season. In the process, you also became the first African to qualify a team for the UEFA Champions League competition.
“The fact that KF Tirana was unable to win any silverware since the year 2018 until your arrival in December 2019 puts your accomplishment in proper perspective.
“Certainly, your rare character traits of sobriety, quiet confidence, seamless application and effortless brilliance, so evident in your days with the Senior National Football Team, Super Eagles, steered you and your team to glory. This achievement is no doubt a marker for other Nigerian Coaches, including your fellow ex-internationals, that by working assiduously and diligently in a noble way, they can indeed go out there and break the proverbial glass ceiling.
“On our part, we wish you and KF Tirana an enriching and fulfilling experience in the UEFA Champions League, where you are bound to come across much tougher encounters, but you have already demonstrated that you have the capacity to be unflappable when the going gets tough.”