A binding agreement regarding Nigeria’s preparation and participation at the Russia 2018 FIFA World Cup finals in Russia was signed in the Russian city of Krasnodar on Tuesday morning between the Nigeria Football Federation and the Super Eagles, the NFF announced in a press release on Tuesday.
The meeting to prepare the agreement was held on Sunday night in the same city.
NFF President Amaju Pinnick, Vice Presidents Seyi Akinwunmi and Shehu Dikko, General Secretary Mohammed Sanusi and Technical and Development Committee chairman Yusuf Ahmed Fresh represented the NFF, while Technical Adviser Gernot Rohr, Chief Coach Salisu Yusuf, Team Administrator Enebi Achor and Captain Mikel John Obi, Ahmed Musa, Kenneth Omeruo and William Ekong stood in for the Super Eagles.
Before the meeting, Pinnick told thenff.com that the NFF was determined to, with the single agreement, put behind it all the crises and confrontations that had bedevilled African teams’ participation at the FIFA World Cup in the past.
“We have done it; we have concluded negotiations and come to agreement with the team as regards bonuses, allowances and share of income from FIFA for the 2018 World Cup. Every detail has been agreed on match bonus for each match and each round up to the Final as well as share of income from FIFA money for each round until the stage we are able to get to at the finals,” Dikko said.
“We also agreed on preparation, such as how much players will be paid for the friendly matches, including how and when the monies would be paid. We even delved into how the NFF would apply the funds due to it from FIFA after paying the players their share.”
Pinnick and Sanusi signed for the NFF while Gernot Rohr and Salisu Yusuf signed for the technical crew and Captain Mikel Obi and Ahmed Musa signed for the players.
“The agreement represents the full and final understanding between the NFF and the team for the 2018 FIFAWorld Cup Russia and not subject to review or negotiations, except there is a review by FIFA of what it has approved and published as prize money for the participating countries.
“We have opted for this international best practice in order to fully motivate the team and ensure there are no distractions or discontent before and during the tournament,” Dikko added.
It is the first time in the history of Nigeria’s participation in international championships that a formal agreement between the NFF and the team is documented.
“We are very happy and excited with this development. This is the first time since I started playing for the senior team that I would see everything regarding preparation and bonuses and allowances put down in black and white and a binding agreement executed. It is reassuring that we now have a Federation leadership so committed to making everything work that they arranged this meeting and allowed the players to contribute and then set out to sign the agreement,” Mikel Obi said.
At the last FIFA World Cup finals in Brazil, the Super Eagles missed a training session in protest over bonuses and allowances and share of the income from FIFA, forcing the Federal Government to dispatch then Sports Minister Tammy Danagogo to Brazil with millions of dollars in cash.