March 8, 2010

Lagerback/Eguavoen: Pinnick calls for support

As the dust over a new technical adviser for the Super Eagles gradually settles, a call has been made to all Nigerians to support the choice of Lars Lagerback.

Addressing some members of the Sporting press conference at the Media Centre on Saturday at the VIP Lounge of the Warri City Stadium, Mr. Amaju Melvin Pinnick said though Lagerback did not possess a more intimidating resume more than the other coaches that came for the interview, the Swede seemed genuinely interested in the job and wants to settle down to work immediately.

Mr. Pinnick, who is the Executive Chairman of the Delta State Sports Commission and the Football Association respectively again, commended the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF)/National Sports Commission for engaging a foreign coach and said it should have even come earlier.

On the disqualification of Dr. Sam Sam Jaja from contesting the election of the Nigeria Premier League (NPL), Mr. Pinnick said it would amount to contempt of court for him to comment on the issue because he is aware that the aggrieved party is already seeking redress in the court of law.

Commenting on the NFF – Sharks Football Club’s imbroglio, Mr. Pinnick said he was quoted out of context in the interview he granted to the press. He said “if the Commissioner for Sports of Rivers State, Mr. Boma Iyayi, actually signed the redeployment letter of General Manager on the letter-headed paper of Sharks FC, it was fundamentally wrong…

if there are discrepancies in the signatures and dates which emanated from the office(s) of the Honourable Commissioner and the Head of Service on the redeployment of the General Manager, then the Commissioner should retrace his steps and apologise to the Football Federation but if on the other hand, the redeployment of the General Manager was a normal civil service routine in line with Rivers State due process which saw the General Manager posted out to a new beat, the NFF should apologise to the Rivers State Government”, especially because of the enormous contribution of the Rivers State Government to Sports Development in general and football in particular in Nigeria.

On Shaibu Amodu, Mr. Pinnick advised him to accept his new assignment with equanimity, insisting philosophically that providence has a way of playing out itself.

Said Pinnick: “Your name can never be forgotten when the history of Nigerian Football is written. See Austin Eguavoen as a colleague. Both of you have paid your dues. Expunge any form of acrimony from your mind…… accept the new challenge, God helping us, we shall take the game to the next level of our dreams”.