Newly elected NFF president Amaju Pinnick has over time shown he is not a big fan of Stephen Keshi and this could well decide the future of the coach.
Keshi does not have a contract after his initial deal ran out after the World Cup. He will take charge of Nigeria’s two AFCON qualifiers against Sudan this month after which the new NFF executive committee led by Pinnick will decide on his future.
However, the early signals are not promising for Keshi. It is feared that he will not keep his job much longer at least going by what Pinnick thinks of him. Pinnick questioned Keshi’s competence during the World Cup in Brazil.
“I like Keshi as a person, but the Eagles run-up to the World Cup and their first game (vs Iran) has proved to me that Keshi has reached his limit,” the new NFF chief told Saturday Vanguard Sports in an interview after the last FIFA World Cup in Brazil. That was before he became NFF boss.
“He is a national hero. I celebrate him for all he has achieved with the team in such a short time, but it appears he can’t move the Eagles forward unless he improves on his abilities.”
Pinnick also blamed Keshi’s coaching staff for not adopting the scientific approach and so Nigeria’s failure to go past the knockout stage of the last World Cup.
“We failed to go further in Brazil because our coaches did not adopt the scientific approach to winning matches. Football has gone beyond having a coaching crew on the bench,” he said.
“The trend now is to have the technical back-room staff, peopled by expert coaches, who win matches from the bench.”