The Nigeria Football Federation on Tuesday formally reappointed Stephen Keshi Nigeria coach for the third time after signing a two-year contract.
In his first spell, Keshi won the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations but the deal was not renewed after the 2014 World Cup.
Keshi would later return on a match-by-match deal, which ended in November after failure to reach the 2015 Nations Cup held in Equatorial Guinea.
Keshi spoke to the media moments after signing the dotted lines.
“It’s a fresh start. We need the support of our fans, media and every Nigerian to return the team to where we truly belong.
“As a coach and former player, I was also hurt that we failed to qualify for the last Nations Cup.
“To succeed, we all need to come together as one because Nigeria belongs to us, this is not Stephen Keshi’s team but our national team,” Keshi stated.
The former Strasbourg of France libero was billed to sign the contract last Friday but the NFF President, Amaju Pinnick was said to be out of Nigeria same day.
The embattled Keshi has been set several targets and that his contract will be terminated if he does not meet them.
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Meanwhile, Daniel Amokachi has left his role as Keshi’s assistant with immediate effect and has been replaced by coach Salisu Yusuf.
Yusuf, who led Kano Pillars to the Nigerian title in 2008, has previously worked as assistant to former Nigeria coach Samson Siasia at both senior and U-20 levels.
Yusuf is expected to oversee Nigeria’s home-based Eagles preparing for the 2016 African Nations Championship (CHAN).
As caretaker coach, Keshi endured a turbulent 2014, in which he was sacked by the NFF and only reinstalled after intervention from Nigeria President Goodluck Jonathan.
Keshi was in charge of the Eagles in their two home matches in Abuja and Uyo in the 2015 AFCON race.
The Super Eagles have been drawn in one of the toughest-looking groups, alongside seven-time champions Egypt, Tanzania and Chad and Keshi looks ahead with renewed optimism.
“I understand we still have some disappointed people out there but our dedicated players deserve our encouragement and support,” added Keshi.
“It doesn’t matter where they play, these boys always give everything and we need to stand by them and the coaching crew.
“I remain confident that this time around we will see an improvement, change in attitude and positive results,” Keshi said.
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