Babajide Alaka | Deputy Editor
That Stephen Keshi purportedly resigned in the aftermath of the Super Eagles victory over Burkina Faso did not come as a surprise to many avid football pundits in the land.
All the signs were there that the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) – why they changed their name from NFA (No Future Ambition); which was a very apt title beats anyone’s imagination – were not in tune with the workings of the coach and wanted to replace him with a foreign dollar-motivated trainer with a sharing formula in place – in the guise of a certain Tom Sainfiet, who was employed and dismissed without resuming the job.
The questions that have been asked of the football house over time have never been answered in detail and we continue to nosedive from one crisis to the other. While they say they want to bring in a foreign coach (which is really a get rich scheme), they put obstacles and mines in the path of their current employee to ensure that he failed.
Unfortunately, the calculations made before the match against Cote d’Ivoire and the Afcon in general boomeranged in a cataclysmic way that it is sure to have fatal effect on the careers of some in the Glass House – but you can never say never in this land that does not run on civilised conduct.
Why must a Chris Green be hankering after sacking a coach that his Technical Committee recommended for the Super Eagles post 15 months ago when the Nigeria Premier League which is the foundation and baby of the NFF is dying a slow death?
What is Aminu Maigari going to say he achieved in his time as NFF President? Thankfully, Stephen Keshi won the Nations Cup and that will be on Maigari’s CV. But looking at his tenure, what has he singularly thought up and brought to fruition? Zilch!!!
It is very unbecoming of officials – who in civilised societies will be doing community service to be grand standing on someone who is at least doing some work where all they do is fly up and down the globe looking for per diem to line their pockets while claiming that they have given the coach all he needs - what is your job in the first place?
A federation that has sold all the national teams plus the Nigeria Football League and the Female League for N350 million really needs to hide its face when football matters are being discussed. A federation that cannot raise money on the Super Eagles – the easiest product to sell in Nigeria – is not worthy of its appellation.
The best thing that can happen going forward is for Maigari and Green to tender their resignation with their tails between their legs and find a farm in their home towns to retire to.
Let those who are progressive, those who know that football is big business and those that have the intelligence quotient to make positive things happen for our football be appointed (yes, appointed) to the offices.
The Super Eagles have once again shifted the focus of world football to Nigeria and the likes of Efe Ambrose are already reaping the benefits with Liverpool being mentioned as interested in his services. That is what football can do to the image of the country - it is not about paying $40, 000 to an international media company for a doctored interview.