Nigeria’s Minister of Sports, Barrister Solomon Dalung has ruled out the NFF’s decision to appoint a foreign coach for the Super Eagles to help qualify the country’s senior national team to Russia 2018 World Cup, because the football body cannot even pay it’s home grown coaches.
The NFF had drawn up a list of foreign coaches to handle the Super Eagles but the sports minister has questioned the rationale behind this, describing it “a fundamental contradiction not easy to swallow”.
The minister however said that using local coaches was worthwhile if they could rise above parochial politics.
“The selection of coach usually is handled by our technical team. We are a supervising ministry.’ Dalung said, according to BusinessDay.
”We have little to do with the process but we have a role in guiding what is best for Nigeria. I have always maintained that if we cannot pay indigenous coaches, we still owe them some months of salaries, some of them have even died without those salaries.
“Do we still go and look for foreign coach and will he be able to tolerate us without salaries for some time more also that we may also be paying him in hard currency? So, it is a fundamental contradiction to swallow easily but there is one aspect of this indigenous coaching that has been responsible for the poor performance of football in Nigeria which Nigerians need to know.
“They have not been able to grow above their parochial sentiment. An example is that a coach will train a team, the team will qualify to go to the next stage, once it becomes international they will now submit a different list of people not the entire new people who qualified.This already has violated what is referred to as team spirit in football. A team that played is different from the one that is going. We have that crisis on our hands now, especially with the list of those who are going to Rio.
“Those who qualified are fundamentally different from those that have been sent to go and play at the finals. So, some people are only good to go and qualify and create room for others to go. That is one of the problems with indigenous coaching,”Dalung said.
Previous coaches of the Super Eagles, Sunday Oliseh, the late Shuaibu Amodu and Stephen Keshi complained of being owed salaries at one point or the other during their tenure.