ALEXANDRIA – Super Eagles vice-captain Ahmed Musa says the team is yet to receive their outstanding allowances and bonuses as promised by the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) and also said African governments should be more proactive in planning for teams attending international competitions in order to prevent incessant embarrassments caused by money problems.
Speaking at the pre-match press conference ahead of Nigeria’s last game in Group B at the ongoing 2019 Africa Cup of Nations, the forward revealed that despite media reports to the contrary, the players were yet to have their entitlements settled despite the federation having set Friday (yesterday) as the deadline for meeting the players’ demands.
The Super Eagles had boycotted their last pre-match conference before the game against Guinea over the row over pay and were only placated after the NFF promised to offset all outstanding financial issues by Friday. The team then went on to beat Guinea and secured progress to the knockout stage and Musa who said he had no idea what the federation’s plans were, pointed to that performance as evidence that the players have resolved to focus on issues on the pitch rather than pecuniary concerns.
“Yeah, I think we heard something about that but we haven’t seen anything maybe before I go back something will happen but we have talked to ourselves that we have to keep that aside and concentrate on what we are here for.
“I know that we have some issues but we stand amongst ourselves and said we don’t have to make that issue to be our problem in the camp so as you can see, we came out in the last game and proved to ourselves that we can do it. So, saying that there is something coming up, we don’t know maybe there is something we just talked to ourselves that we would have to just keep on going when the FA is ready, they are ready.”
Addressing the penchant of African teams always protesting about financial problems at international events, Musa said that African governments must do more to forestall the issue of teams always portraying the nations in bad light at international tournaments because of money issues.
“I think it’s not only in Nigeria, all Africans we have the same issue each time we have tournaments. So I think the government has to think about this, it is not always we keep on embarrassing our own country in every tournament, so I think all over Africa we have to look into this, anytime we go into tournaments we see some teams saying that they are not coming because of money.”
On the match against Madagascar, Musa who recalled making his debut for the national team against Madagascar in 2010 said although he expects a tough match against The Barea come Sunday.
“I know how important this game is, I think my first game for the Super Eagles was against Madagascar in Calabar in 2010. I have played against them and they are very good but we’ll see who is going to carry the day tomorrow.
“We know that it is a very tough game, Madagascar play very good and have very good quality players but we are not afraid of any country, we are just coming there tomorrow and after ninety minutes, we’ll know who is the best team.”