Home Sports Finidi’s Choice As Super Eagles’ Coach Backed By Ex-Players

Finidi’s Choice As Super Eagles’ Coach Backed By Ex-Players

George Finidi
George Finidi

The Nigeria Football Federation has garnered commendations from former Super Eagles players following the appointment of George Finidi as the new coach for the men’s senior national team but adds that he must be supported to succeed.

On Monday, the NFF board endorsed the recommendation of its Technical and Development Committee to name Finidi as the successor to Jose Peseiro, who voluntarily stepped down after guiding the team to a second-place finish at the recent 2023 Africa Cup of Nations in Ivory Coast.

However, the NFF did not disclose the contract specifics for Finidi, nor did they reveal his assistants.

Speaking with The PUNCH, former Eagles winger and 2000 Africa Cup of Nations silver medalist, Tijani Babangida expressed delight at Finidi’s appointment, citing his familiarity with the team as an asset.

Finidi spent 20 months as assistant to Peseiro and was also in charge of the Eagles in an interim capacity during two friendly matches in Morocco last month.

“Finidi is a solid choice for the Eagles and I think he needs our support now,” Babangida said.

“Having been within the system for a considerable time, he understands its dynamics, and I believe he will meet the lofty expectations set for him.”

Former Nigeria and Reading defender Sam Sodje also lauded the NFF for heeding the call of Nigerians by appointing an indigenous coach to succeed Peseiro.

“The appointment has been made, and regardless of whether it’s deemed good or bad, we must rally behind Finidi to ensure his success,” Sodje told The PUNCH.

“Having advocated for an indigenous coach, we now have one at the helm, thanks to the NFF. We must offer him unwavering support, especially with the upcoming World Cup qualifiers against South Africa and Benin Republic in June.”

Echoing similar sentiments, former Eagles striker Ayo Makinwa, expressed confidence in Finidi’s appointment, highlighting his distinguished career as a player, notably his pivotal goal that secured Nigeria’s qualification for their first-ever FIFA World Cup in the USA.

“Finidi was a standout player in his heyday, and I’m hopeful he’ll translate that prowess into coaching,” Makinwa remarked.

“Although history suggests otherwise, I believe he remains an excellent choice.”

Efe Ambrose, a 2013 AFCON winner and defender for Queen of the South, concurred with the sentiment that Finidi’s appointment was apt, emphasizing the importance of granting him the autonomy to work with the team without undue interference.

“He is indeed a suitable choice, and I am optimistic about his capabilities,” Ambrose affirmed.

“I firmly believe that an indigenous coach will foster a stronger team cohesion and performance.”

Credit: punchng.com

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