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Pinnick’s trip to London good for our football, says Green



NFF president, Amaju Pinnick

As the debate continues over the recent trip to London by the President of Nigeria Football Federation (NFF), Amass Pinnick, a board member of the federation, Barrister Christopher Green, has stated that he sees nothing wrong in the trip. “I think Amaju meant well even though the trip to London coincided with the Charity Shield game between Arsenal and Chelsea,” Green said yesterday in reaction to comments by some Nigerians regarding the trip.

Last weekend, the Nigeria Professional Football League resumed for the second stanza, just as the national U-23 team was in Congo and the Super Falcons in Equatorial Guinea, both for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games qualifying matches. However, Pinnick’s decision to travel to London alongside Super Eagles coach, Sunday Oliseh, to hold talks with prospective sponsors rather than attend any of the matches, was described by some sports fans as an act of irresponsibility.

But Green said those misinterpreting Pinnick’s trip to London should have a re-think. “Why would anybody overlook players of Nigerian descent in the Premiership and other good leagues across Europe? The search for these players that have been scouted and identified takes a lot. It gives a lot of impetus when a President leads in this respect.

I know what it took us to convince Victor Moses to play for us when I was Chairman of the Technical Committee,” he said. Green added: “The Super Eagles is the country’s senior national team and I support Oliseh in his quest of getting the best players in the best leagues to play for us.

Do you know that some coaches in the Premiership discourage African players from wanting to play in the AFCON? Gone are the days when you see African players begging to play for their countries. We should imbue in them that patriotism and nationalism so that at every time, they will know that they are Nigerians and would fight to honour the country.”

“We still have our obligation to introduce our new coach to our kit sponsor and as well market our football of which Amaju is good at. At least Amaju went with Oliseh, which speaks volumes. I think Amaju meant well even though it coincided with a team he loves just like Dangote, Fashola, Amaechi, etc.”

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