Nigeria’s Federation to drag president to Colombia


Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) president, Aminu Maigari, has specially invited the country’s president, Goodluck, Ebele Jonathan to watch the final of the FIFA U20 World Cup by the time the Flying Eagles qualify to the championship game.

“I will ensure that President Goodluck Jonathan is here in Colombia to cheer you to an historic victory as soon as you reach the final,” Maigari told the players at their Hotel de Pereira ahead of Saturday’s Group D match against Saudi Arabia.

“You have done well so far and so doing you have made every Nigerian happy and proud.

“But we expect you to go on and win the World Cup for the first time in Nigeria’s history.

“It is not easy to be African champions, but a few months ago you did just that in South Africa.

“We are now very confident you will go on to the champions of the world with Mr. President here along with his Ministers and Governors to give you all the support you.”

The NFF president promised “a special package” for the team as they progress at the World Cup.

“This will be better than what you received on your way to winning the AYC because the World Cup is higher competition,” he said.

“And the higher you go in Colombia, the happier you will become.”

Maigari also informed the team he has so far received over 200 goodwill messages from Nigerians across the world including one from Sports Minister, Yusuf Sulaiman.

Despite the odd early morning hours the matches at Colombia 2011 are being shown on television in Nigeria, Sports Minister Sulaiman said in his message that “We have been watching your team make millions of Nigerians proud in Colombia. Please accept my big congratulations and tell the team to continue to do their best to the glory of Nigeria.”

It was a very moving 20-minute address by Maigari and both coach John Obuh and skipper Ramon Azeez expressed appreciation for all the support the team have received up to this stage.

The Flying Eagles trained in Port Harcourt for three weeks, then flew out to Portugal for another two weeks training before they featured in a four-nation tournament in Panama as their build-up to Colombia 2011.
Both coach and player promised that they will continue to fly Nigeria’s flag very high in Colombia.

The Flying Eagles are expected to finish top of their first round section after Saturday’s final group game against Saudi Arabia in Pereira.

That will earn them the right to clash with either England or New Zealand in the second round of the biennial tournament.
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