Flying Eagles promised double bonus
24 April 2011
The Nigeria Football Federation have doubled the win bonus of the national U-20 team, Flying Eagles, ahead of their must-win Group B match against Gambia on Sunday at the African Youth Championship in South Africa.
At an afternoon meeting with other top NFF officials in Johannesburg on Friday, NFF president Aminu Maigari approved that the players should be paid the sum of $2,000 each if they are able to fly above the Gambians on Sunday – a result that would automatically earn them a semi-final ticket here and a berth at the FIFA U-20 World Cup finals in Colombia later this year.
“The players will get the sum of $2,000 each for a win, which is a 100 per cent increase on their regular bonus. We believe this should motivate them maximally to go for the three points”, said Maigari.
Head coach, John Obuh, who was invited for another meeting on the preparedness of his squad to give Nigeria a happy Easter celebration, said his team were technically, tactically and psychologically prepared to overpower the Gambians, who stunned reigning world champions Ghana to earn a 1-1 draw on Thursday.
“Everyone felt bad about the loss to Cameroon, but we have put that behind us and we’re all working hard towards achieving victory in Sunday’s match”, Obuh stated.
The match against the Gambians will be played at the Millpark Stadium, in the centre of Johannesburg.
Meanwhile, the Garden Court Southern Sun Hotel of the Flying Eagles in Kempton Park has been declared a no-go zone for players’ agents and scouts by the Nigeria Football Federation.
This was one of the steps taken by the NFF to arrest distractions and possible decline following Thursday’s 1-0 loss to Cameroon at the 17th African Youth Championship.
Chairman of the NFF Technical Committee Chris Green said the move became pertinent as a result of the influx of football agents and all manner of scouts into Johannesburg for the competition, and the distractions they were beginning to bring.
“This is something we have to arrest. We have brought the players here to win the African Youth Championship trophy and make our people back home happy, not for them to sign contracts for all manner of clubs in Europe and elsewhere”, said Green.
Coach John Obuh agreed to the step and said he would impose some of his own regulations to keep the agents in check.
Nigeria face Gambia on Sunday needing all three points to earn a ticket to the semi finals and ultimately to the FIFA U-20 World Cup starting in Colombia on 29th July.