We are ashamed of ourselves, says Onazi
Super Eagles midfielder, Ogenyi Onazi, has described as ‘shameful’ the country’s failure to qualify for the 2017 African Nations Cup.
“We are so ashamed of ourselves for not qualifying for the 2017 AFCON despite all the support we got, particularly from the NFF President, Amaju Pinnick,” he told The Guardian yesterday in Lagos.
Onazi was one of the regular players in the Super Eagles during Coach Stephen Keshi’s era. He played a big role in Nigeria’s triumph at South Africa 2013 African Nations Cup.
He was invited by interim coach, Samson Siasia, for the double-header 2017 AFCON qualifier against the Pharaohs of Egypt, but many soccer fans were shocked to see Onazi siting among the spectators at the Ahmadu Bello Stadium last week in Kaduna during the first leg. He was also left out in the second leg in Egypt.
With the ticket lost to Egypt, Onazi says the team should take the blame and not the NFF President, Pinnick.“In my years of playing football for this country, I have not seen a caring sports administrator like Amaju Pinnick. I am not saying this because I need a favour from him, but I just want to set the records straight.
“This man has given us everything we need to succeed, but the results are not there to reciprocate his gesture. We are ashamed of ourselves for not qualifying for the 2017 AFCON. Pinnick is always transparent in all his dealings with the Super Eagles. He does not hide anything from us. You won’t believe that Pinnick went as far as showing to us the approval he got from the Presidency concerning our match allowances and bonuses for the two games against Egypt.
Many others won’t do that because of one thing or the other. I was told that some board members are not even happy with him for doing so because they want to eat players’ money. I want to appeal to him not to feel frustrated,” Onazi stated.
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