By Patrick Omorodion
The sack of coach Shaibu Amodu from the Super Eagles has received jabs from the former chairman of the Nigeria Football Association, NFA, Alhaji Ibrahim Galadima and Human Rights lawyer, Festus Keyamo.
Alhaji Galadima speaking with Sunday Vanguard sports on telephone from his Kano base yesterday, said the problem of the Eagles was beyond Amodu, stressing that what happened at the Nations Cup in Angola is a wake up call to completely overhaul the entire football structure in the country.
â€œExcept they have other reasons to remove Amodu, I feel that Amodu is not the only problem of football in Nigeria. He was given a semi final target and he achieved that. It is time we look into the administration of the game as well as players attitudeâ€, Alhaji Galadima said.
The former Kano State Sports Commissioner said he was worried about the shortness of time between the kick-off of the World Cup and the appointment of a foreign coach to handle the team, stressing that what is paramount now was the overhaul of the entire football structure.
On his part, controversial lawyer Keyamo in a two-page press statement sent to Sunday Vanguard yesterday, condemned Amoduâ€™s sack from the main stream Eagles, describing the action as â€œfaulty, unreasonable and unpatrioticâ€ for the reason that those pencilled down to take his job did not qualify their own countries for the 2010 World Cup.
Arguing that Amodu met the target his employers gave to him for the Nations Cup, Keyamo said, â€œI have not seen anywhere in the world where a coach qualifies a team for the World Cup yet gets the booth for â€œincompetenceâ€ and is not allowed to lead the team to the World Cupâ€.
Like Galadima, Keyamo said that â€œthe time between now and the World Cup is too short for the appointment of a new coach,â€ adding â€œI am prompted to react to this event as (an) ardent sports fan, a patriotic follower of the Super Eagles and a Nigerian.â€
It would be recalled that the Executive Committee of the Nigeria Football Federation which met in Abuja late Friday to, according to it, â€œdiscuss on pertinent issues in Nigeria footballâ€, decided among other things to approve the â€œimmediate appointment of a new Technical Adviser for the Super Eagles ahead of the 2010 FIFA World Cup finals to be staged in the Republic of South Africa.â€
According to the communique issued after the meeting, the Committee also directed the Technical Committee of the NFF â€œto commence immediate contact and complete screening of fiveÂ candidates pencilled down for the job, by the end of this month (February 2010).
The Technical Committeeâ€™s job, the communique added, also includes the recommendation to the Executive Committee a short â€“list of three out of theÂ five foreign coaches pencilled down namely Bruno Metsu, Guus Hiddink, Ratomir Dujkovic, Louis van Gaal and Peter Taylor.
The communique ended with an announcement of the demotion of the Amodu-led technical crew to handle the Super Eagles Team B made up of wholly home-based players, the same set of players Amodu had described as training materials. They are expected to start immediate training of the team, preparatory to the 2011 African Nations Championship, which Okey Emordi could not qualify the inaugural team for.