Super Eagles’ New Head Coach: Sports Minister Backs Amunike, NFF Votes For Foreigner

By Daily Sports on December 6, 2021

Views: 586

If you like, and you won’t make a mistake to say, the stage for who becomes the supremo of the Super Eagles is set. You can join me to use this cliché that the high wire politics of employment of Super Eagles Head Coach is here.

The traditional role of Sports Ministers being in the thick of the action to have a say on who handles the flagship team of Nigeria is becoming interesting every second if your ears are on ground to see what has been playing out since the unanimity consensus that Gernot Rohr must go shortly after that Nigeria vs Cape Verde game in Teslim Balogun Stadium, Lagos.

Truth is that Sunday Dare has fully and strongly joined the fray in search for the technical hand of the Eagles. Before this columnist put this week’s page to bed, the heat of the argument between Dare and Amaju Pinnicks’ NFF board is on.

However, some executive committee members have secretly met with the Sports Minister to pledge their loyalty on his preferred choice of Emmanuel Amunike as the new Head Coach of the Super Eagles squad. But Amaju Pinnick is not relenting on his spirited move to ensure he gets the listening ears of Dare to convince him on the need for first rate foreign hand. How that will live on we will be in the know as the issue trends or develops.

It is already in the public domain that there is heavy cold war between Sports Minister, Sunday Dare and the President of the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF), Amaju Pinnick and some of his executive committee members on who takes over from the embattled Gernot Rohr whose performance in the flagship Nigerian team has biggest question mark ever in history.

While Dare is solidly routing for the employment of former Super Eagles and Africa Player of the Year laurel winner, Emmanuel Amunike who proved his coaching worth in the U-17 national side especially and did well as Tanzanian national team side before something happened and he threw in the towel honourably.

It is interesting to note that the NFF is already up in arms with Dare saying emphatic No to Amunike candidature. The apex football governing body in the land told Dare point blank to his face that the NFF wants a foreign handler for the job, according to their claim, for optimal/high performance that would bring out the best and wipe out totally the current under-performing stance of the team which took the front burner since the arrival of Rohr in the team as a technical hand.

It is the main issue on ground in national team football presently. Truth is that this is when NFF makes its dollars from various agents of candidates that would want their candidates to have a shot or be selected for an interview for the top plumb job of the Super Eagles.

This is not the first time and so this time won’t an exception. I have been privileged to have my ears on ground and also have right people in places it is happening. Daily Sports ( will be on the trail and thickly too. The usual horse trading and sundry would take place and being the fight main for the fittest on the strong with deepest pockets survives this fight.

Much money in dollars, euros and pounds sterling would, as usual, exchange hands and such has been the lot of and method of the recruitment of Super Eagles Head Coach over these years. Many football coaches’ agents with deep pockets are already at work, lobbying and sundry.

Let it be said clearly here again and again that whenever the opportunity to hire foreign coach for the Super Eagles beacons, NFF executive committee members and technical committee members smile to the banks. Excessive money in foreign currencies rule the day.

Let me be honest with you that the technical committee that brought in Rohr was exceptional in their duty. It would be recalled that this now villain Gernot Rohr was imposed on the Technical Committee. There was no visible report(s) of bribe taking from the agents of different foreign coaches that wanted their clients to coach the Super Eagles squad. They out bided themselves. My eyes have been on the ball on the ball whenever new recruitment exercise for the topmost job of the Eagles, let someone or anybody come out publicly and dispute my claim that only the technical committee headed by Barrister Chris Green held his head up despite the temptation and pressure from the higher up.

The Rivers State-born legal practitioner meant well for the Super Eagles and Nigeria but the powers that be through Pinnick Amaju put his genuine intentions and tailor measured plan to nothingness of the present lame duck performance displayed by Gernot Rohr.

Now Nigeria is one march again. At the crossroads. The usual thing uppermost in the minds of people saddled to pick the best from the lot is money, how much that enters their pockets at the end of the exercise matters most. The stage is already set as many coaches agents are falling over themselves to push their candidates through for short listing first.

It is always rough, tough, high tension wire, dangerous wave consuming current waters. Such is the way and manner Nigeria’s coach emerges. It is no hidden fact. In short, it is the norm here sealed and delivered. The voice of Sunday Dare for indigenous handler in Emmanuel Amunike is getting thinner and weaker by the day because even the Sports Minister himself cannot cast the first stone before Amaju Pinnick and members. His voice that is supposed to carry lots of weight and not hot air is also supposed to carry moss but sadly is being dismissed with wave of the hand. It is gloomy but that is the reality on ground in Nigeria polity today. Hands of the so called officers are soiled in dirty deals.

The so-called superior officers cannot look straight into the eyes of their subordinates. Emmanuel Amunike has paid his dues as player and then coach experience that would have helped him get on with the Super Eagles and improve their status in the comity of high profile and consistent teams in Africa and complete enduringly at the world level.  

The ex-international turned trained coach has the capacity to handle the team without any prejudice. Dare cannot go far on his Amunike to coach the Eagles project. NFF eyes are on the highly anticipated free following foreign currencies from agents. That is the situation report now. As the tag of war supremacy war brew between Dare and NFF continues, one hopes that this selfish interest battle of wits and brawns will not affect the team’s performance in AFCON and the impending World Cup play offs.

Whether we like it or not, there is a problem on ground. Nigeria is a country where there are no records. The current issue is burning national discourse. But who will bail the cat. Sunday Dare ought to have superior voice over the NFF but the reverse is the presently. In this context is the fittest Dare or NFF

Let us keep our fingers crossed as this issue of national interest and importance trends. Keep shooting hard till next week as the struggle continues!!

Source Daily Sports

Posted December 6, 2021


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