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NFF Apologises to Nigerians, Reads Riot Act to Eagles over No Show

NFF Apologises to Nigerians, Reads Riot Act to Eagles over No Show


*Eagles to depart Abuja this morning for Bissau for must-win reverse fixture

Olawale Ajimotokan in Abuja

Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) has apologised to Nigerians over the poor outings of the U23 Men National Team (Olympic Eagles) and the Senior Men National Team (Super Eagles) in crucial international matches at the weekend.

The Super Eagles fell 0-1 to Guinea Bissau’s Djurtus in a 2023 Africa Cup of Nations qualifying match at the Moshood Abiola National Stadium, two days after the U23 boys failed to beat Guinea in a first leg, final qualifying fixture for the U23 Africa Cup of Nations

President of NFF, Alhaji Ibrahim Musa Gusau, stated that the Federation was nonplussed by the below-par outings, but would immediately work hard to ensure the teams turn their qualifying games around in a positive way.

“We tender an unreserved apology to Nigerians for the poor results. We worked and planned hard for good results but things turned out differently on the pitch. Our focus now is on redeeming the situation in the return matches early next week.”

Gusau expressed confidence the U23 boys will take their chances in Rabat on Tuesday against Guinea to qualify for the U23 AFCON, and that the Super Eagles will win in Bissau on Monday to return to the top of their qualifying group for the 2023 AFCON.

Mama Balde’s 29th minute goal was the only strike in the encounter that condemned Super Eagles to defeat in front of fervent home fans in Abuja, the same venue Ghana snatched 2022 World Cup ticket from Nigeria with an away goal rule. In the Nigeria versus Guinea Bissau, Super Eagles created a dozen chances in the second half but failed to get the ball into the Wild Dogs’ net.

Gusau however announced ahead of Monday’s reverse fixture in Bissau that visible total commitment implying patriotic fervour will now be a key factor, apart from competence and current form, for any football player who wishes to wear the nation’s green-white-green jersey at any level.

Gusau’s words, spoken to players of the Super Eagles on Saturday morning, was a direct reference to Friday’s 2023 Africa Cup of Nations qualifying defeat to Guinea Bissau at the Moshood Abiola National Stadium, which pushed the Eagles down to second place in their qualification group.

Meanwhile, Nigeria’s  delegation to Monday’s match in Bissau will depart from the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja at 7am today aboard a chartered flight. 

The match is scheduled to come up at the Estadio 24 de Setembrostarting from 5pmGuinea Bissau time (6pmNigeria time) on Monday.


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