“I Will Never Abandon My Motherland” – Sunday Oliseh Backtracks After Fierce Backlash Over Vow Never To Coach Eagles Again

Sunday Oliseh has issued a video statement backtracking on his astonishing vow to never coach the Super Eagles again.

The former Super Eagles captain and manager caused a national uproar when he emphatically shot down any chances of ever returning to the Eagles dugout in an Instagram Live interview with The Punch on Monday.

Oliseh who took over from Stephen Keshi as Eagles coach between July 2015 and February 2016 said in the interview that he no “intention of ever” returning as coach after his shock departure amid claims of unpaid salaries and personality clashes with players and officials of Nigerian Football Federation.

“No, I don’t have the intention of ever coaching the (Super) Eagles again. I loved working with the boys, I love coaching my country, but the atmosphere around it was no longer healthy,” Oliseh said when asked about a chance of returning to the helm of the 3-time African champions.

“I didn’t want the job anymore. Health-wise I was not feeling too good; secondly, we were owed salaries. I was spending money on my health and on my team. I just couldn’t die on the job.

“Truth is, we have a foreign coach now and from what I heard and know, he is being paid four times the wages Stephen Keshi and I were paid and these are two players (himself and Keshi) who won trophies for Nigeria.

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“I’ve never heard Gernot Rohr complain about wages. Keshi, while he was coaching, was always complaining, when I was coaching for four months, I was unpaid, for six months my assistants were unpaid, so I had to leave the job; we were also being frustrated.”

But after the interview generated fierce backlash from Nigerians, 1994 AFCOn winner Oliseh quickly moved to clarify that his comments were not intended as a slight on Nigeria or Nigerians.

The former Ajax and Borussia Dortmund midfielder said he only sought to highlight the discriminatory treatment and unequal working conditions that indigenous coaches face compared to their foreign counterparts and added that his reservations about returning as coach was only for “the moment”.

Oliseh reiterated his belief that “a Nigerian is doomed to fail” as Eagles coach because and pledged to steer clear of the national team “as long as the situation is as it is is now”.

“I will never abandon my country Nigeria, I am a proud Nigerian and I will always be available to help my country,” Oliseh who won 55 caps for the Super Eagles began in the video. 

“Now what I will like to clarify is that as long as the situation is as it is now, as long as our own citizens are not being given the right treatments and are not being allowed to get the same working conditions like foreigners get when they come to coach our motherland, I am not interested in coaching.”

The former Juventus player added: “I have sacrificed my life on more than one occasion to help my country come far so for that reason I just wanted to be clear on this fact.”

“The fact that I, at this moment do not feel that I will like to coach Nigeria again is nothing to do with my people.

“That is to do with the fact that the conditions that are there for Nigerian citizens who coach the Super Eagles are not the same that are given to foreigners and for that reason, a Nigerian is doomed to fail if they take over.