By Ben Efe
Coach Lars Lagerback’s hope of meeting the Eagles in London may run into a hitch as the players may not be present due to club commitments.
European clubs are not willing to release some of these players for the London get-together because they argue that this is a very crucial time in the season and also next week is not an international week approved by FIFA.
â€œYes, itâ€™s true we have received letters from a few of the clubs saying they wonâ€™t release their players for the meeting, but we have also resolved to go ahead with the programme and make do with those who are able to make it to London,â€ said NFA spokesman, Ademola Olajire.
The NFA had originally planned for the meeting to take place on April 14 before it was shifted to Tuesday, by which time the rest of Europe would be caught up in the fever of the UEFA Champions League semi-final, second leg matches.
Reports have suggested that a late visa application to the British High Commission in Abuja has ruled out the six players from the local league, while Austrian club, Red Bull Salzburg, have informed the NFA defender Rabiu Afolabi will not be available.
â€œMy club have made it very clear that they will not release me because we are deep in the title race and as such they do not welcome any distractions,â€ Afolabi said.
â€œI spoke to both my trainer as well as one of the club directors, but they were insistent they wonâ€™t let me go.â€
The Eagles have been booked into the Marriot Hotel close to the airport. They are expected to arrive Tuesday for a get-together that will include a team meeting with the coach as well as a training session on Wednesday at the old Chelsea training ground.