Six foreign coaches battle for Super Falcons’ job
• Omagbemi, others can be assistants, says NFF
Nigeria Football Federation (NFF)’s search for a foreign coach for the Super Falcons may have attracted no fewer that six managers, The Guardian has learnt.
The NFF President, Amaju Pinnick, had declared recently that he would do everything possible to get the best coach for the Super Falcons no matter where the person comes from.
The Guardian learnt yesterday that six coaches from different countries had indicated their interest to handle the Super Falcons.
The last foreigner to handle the team, Thomas Dennerby, a Swede, resigned shortly after leading the Falcons to the 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup despite having a year left on his contract. He took up the job in January 2018 and led Nigeria to lift the 2018 AWCON title in Ghana before leading the team to the knockout stage of the 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup in France.
An NFF official told The Guardian yesterday that two female and four male foreign coaches are currently jostling for the Super Falcons job. The official refused to name the nationalities of the job-seeking foreign coaches.
Another official of the NFF who spoke with The Guardian yesterday hinted that the federation had decided to engage a foreigner for the Super Falcons job, thereby ending speculations that the NFF was considering the duo of Florence Omagbemi and Mercy Akide for the job.
“We are going for a foreign coach for the Super Falcons’ job,” the official said. “We want to avoid a situation whereby a local coach will be holding us to ransom after getting the job. They always have that attitude of showing off their bad characters after getting the job. We don’t have time for that any longer.”
The official, however, stated that engaging a foreign coach for the team does not mean shutting the doors against ex-Super Falcons players and other Nigerian coaches. “If someone like Florence Omagbemi wants to be part of the team, she can come in as an assistant coach. That is the best we can offer her for now.”
The Guardian recalls that Omagbemi led the Super Falcons to win the 2016 AFCON title, beating host Cameroon in the final. Her contract was not renewed by the NFF. A majority of the players are said to be clamouring for Omagbemi’s return to the team.