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banner Wednesday, 20 February, 2002, 17:46 GMT
Oneya backs Shaibu's dismissal
Oneya says Shaibu's sacking is a popular decision
Oneya says Shaibu's sacking is a popular decision
By BBC Sport Online's Osasu Obayiuwana

Dominic Oneya, Chairman of the Nigeria Football Association (Nfa) says their decision to remove Amodu Shaibu as manager is "a popular one".

Speaking to BBC Sport Online, Oneya said a bronze medal at the African Nations Cup was unsatisfactory, considering the wealth of talent at Nigeria's disposal.

"He (Shaibu) has served the country very well but we thought that it was time for a change. I do not think that there is anything wrong with getting a new hand for our team"

We may not have a good outing (at the World Cup) but that does not mean that we would not put up a good show
Dominic Oneya, Nigeria's FA Chairman

"Placing third at the Nations Cup is not a bad performance. But in all our matches we had to hold our breath before we were sure we had won. That was not good enough.

"We had high expectations for our team at the Nations Cup and they were not met by the coaching crew. "

Oneya says that Shaibu and his two assistants - Stephen Keshi and Joe Erico - are still under contract to the Nigerian FA.

"The three coaches will remain in our pool of coaches and would be re-deployed to handle new teams in due course", Oneya said.

World Cup

With three months to the World Cup finals, the change in Nigeria's coaching crew could potentially ruin the Super Eagles chances of making a credible appearance at the tournament.

Stephen Keshi in training
Keshi will be sent to another team

But Oneya says that they are looking beyond Korea/Japan 2002. "We are not just thinking of the World Cup. We are also thinking of the future.

"The World Cup might be the immediate thing but do not forget that we have the Olympics and the All-Africa Games (in 2003) which we are hosting.

"We may not have a good outing (at the World Cup) but that does not mean that we would not put on a good show"

The Nfa Chairman says that Shaibu's replacement, Festus Onigbinde, is an experienced coach that will settle into the job very quickly.

"He (Onigbinde) is not new to Nigeria and is not new to the boys"

See also:

20 Feb 02 |  Africa
Confidence key for Nigeria
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