Unpaid bonuses derail Nigeria World Cup hopes

Edwin  - CEO November 24, 2023
Updated 2023/11/25 at 2:30 PM
7 Min Read
Super Eagles Captain, William Troost-Ekong

Paseiro forced to axe captain Ekong from his team for demanding payment of outstanding bonus from sports minister


Get ready to quit if eagles fail against Zimbabwe' | The Guardian Nigeria News - Nigeria and World News — Sport — The Guardian Nigeria News – Nigeria and World NewsSuper Eagles players were pedestrian against Lesotho at the Uyo stadium last week forcing the visitors to 1-1 stalemate in their FIFA Senior World Cup tie in Uyo, Akwa Ibom


By Rasheed Adewuyi


Nigeria is destined to missout on the next senior World cup following manager José Peseiro decision to dump his erstwhile stand-in captain Williams Troost-Ekong from Super Eagles games on the orders of the former sports minister, Sunday Dare.


The assistant Super Eagles captain’s sin was daring to tell the nation’s sports minister that to get the best out of the national football team, Nigeria should first settle outstanding match bonuses and allowances the players are being owed.


Rather than pay the players the money they are due for their labors that reflect years of backlog of outstanding payments, the Oyo State-born former journalist, and minister of sports Development, felt insulted by the stand-in commander of the Nigeria national team and pressured the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) into dropping the Greek Super League club PAOK centre-back for subsequent national engagements.


This was revealed by an NFF chieftain who is familiar with the matter. “And you expect good results from the Super Eagles? The joke is on all of you,” our highly reliable source laughed.


The NFF official explained that backlog of unpaid bonuses and allowances are the reason for the national side’s poor results of dating back into years.


“The Super Eagles have since that time, lost all appetite to win games. The players feel misused, misled, and underappreciated. Their hearts and souls are just not in it anymore,” our source confided.


According to SCORENigeria, The NFF owe Super Eagles a total of 16-match unpaid bonus, with a conservative estimate of each regular Super Eagles player being owed a minimum of $65,000.


The estimation of the Federation’s indebtedness to the players date back to as far as five years ago, when Nigeria began prosecuting the Qatar 2022 FIFA World Cup qualifiers. In that time, Nigeria has lost in competitive games to minnows like Central African Republic and Equatorial Guinea in critical home fixtures and drawn with Sierra Leone 4-4 even blowing a 4-0 first half lead in the process.


Nigeria also recorded her worst African Cup of Nations cup outing in recent memory crashing out in the second round to a COVID-19 ravaged and depleted Tunisia national team at the event in Cameroon.


The Super Eagles also failed to elevate their game against the Black Stars in a crucial World Cup qualifying double header only managing to force the less fancied Ghanaian Men’s national football team to a 1-1 stalemate at home after yet-another poor 0-0 scoreline in Kumasi.


Super Eagles in the process conceded the available African slot for the Qatar 2022 FIFA World Cup to the underdog Ghanaian national football team when it mattered most.


The breakdown of the outstanding bonuses and allowances now threatening the future of national football in Nigeria are as follows:


2018 FIFA World Cup Qualifiers:
Liberia vs Nigeria $5000 Match Bonus
Central Africa vs Nigeria $5000 Match Bonus
Cape Verde vs Nigeria $5000 Match Bonus
Nigeria vs Cape Verde 1 Million Naira Match Bonus
Ghana vs Nigeria $2500 Match Bonus


Mexico vs Nigeria Friendly $2000 Appearance Fee/Camp Allowance $1400
Tunisia vs Nigeria Friendly $2000 Appearance Fee/Camp Allowance $1400
Algeria vs Nigeria Friendly $2000 Appearance Fee
Cameroon vs Nigeria Friendly $2000 Appearance Fee/Camp Allowance $1400


Mexico vs Nigeria Friendly $2000 Appearance Fee/Camp Allowance $1400
Ecuador vs Nigeria Friendly $2000
Sierra Leone vs Nigeria 2023 AFCON Q $5000/Camp Allowance $1400
Sao Tome vs Nigeria 2023 AFCON Q $5000
Algeria vs Nigeria Friendly $2000 Appearance Fee/Camp Allowance $1400


Guinea Bissau vs Nigeria 2023 AFCON Qualifier $5000/Camp Allowance $1400
Sierra Leone vs Nigeria 2023 AFCON Qualifier $5000/Camp Allowance $1400


These calculations did not include Home-Based Super Eagles Camp Allowance for Mexico vs Nigeria Twice in 2021 and 2022; CHAN Eagles Ghana vs Nigeria, Nigeria vs Ghana (Second leg no Transport no Allowance).


Key: ▪$5000 per player for official away game
▪Official home game 1 Million Naira ▪International Friendly Appearance Fee $2000
▪Daily Camp Allowance $200.


Our source said that things are only going to get even worse with the Super Eagles with every game until the issue of outstanding bonuses and allowances are amicably settled between the team and Nigeria sports chieftains.


The minister’s action has only worsened the situation as the team appears to be displeased with the way one of them was mistreated for performing his role as team captain.


“We are close to these boys and they confide to some us about their feelings,” our source added.


“Let me say with all honesty that Lesotho and Zimbabwe are not teams that Nigeria should be sharing spoils with in crucial games like the senior World Cup qualifiers.


“Things are only going to get worse with each Super Eagles outing if these outstanding debts to the team are not resolved soonest,” our source assured.


With an estimated minimum of $65,000 owed to as much as over 40 players and counting, it is becoming increasingly doubtful that the eternally cash crunched and broke NFF will be able to settle such a huge outstanding arrears to the players.


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