By Eddie Akalonu
Former Team Manager of the Super Eagles, Brigadier-General Gregory Adebiyi has said that the present Board of the Nigeria Football Association, NFA headed by Alhaji Sani Lulu Abdullahi should get automatic re-election if the Super Eagles get to the quarter or semi-final of the 2010 World Cup in South Africa.
ChargingÂ the NFA, to state publicly their real intentions and target for the World Cup, General Adebiyi, who spoke in Lagos, said it is instructive to say that the performance of the Eagles in South Africa has a correlation with achievements of the Sani Lulu led- Board.
â€œNow we have long settled the issue of who leads the national team to the World Cup, with Lars Lagerback now fully in charge and fast at work, planning for the Mundial. I think the NFA, as men of honour, should come out boldly and tell Nigerians their target for the World Cupâ€, he said, adding â€œfor me itâ€™s not enough to say you have given a coach a contract stating what he is to achieve.
But there is also the aspect that touches on integrity of the board individually and collectively for which they can be judged tomorrow. They have to make their own intentions known and clearly state it right awayâ€, he said.
â€œFor me our participation in the World Cup is routine until the inevitable happens by way of our performance in the World Cup, that is surpassing our previous outings. I mean, they should make their intentions and target clear now. If Lagerback leads the team to the second round in South Africa, it means nothing.
We have not achieved because Nigeria has gotten to the second round twice in 1994 and 1998. But if the team qualifies for quarter- final, or even gets to the semi final, then we have made good progress. Itâ€™s an achievement for the NFA. If that happens, to me, they do not have to campaign for the elections to come back. Itâ€™s automatic for them.
Like I said, if itâ€™s another second round finish or less, the NFA board just have to quietly give way for another group to come on board and pilot football. The point, like I said, is that they must come out now and make a statement for it to be valid, not after.â€
â€œWe saw the ending to the Nations Cup in Angola that Nigerians were not comfortable and happy that it was a bronze we got. The NFA, despite giving AmoduÂ a semi-final target, were themselves not happy with the condition of the national. TheyÂ not only turned their back on him but asked him to go for good,â€ concluded the former director of the Nigeria Army Heath and Physical Education.