KESHI: I WON’T RELEASE EAGLES PLAYERS FOR FEDERATION CUP
Posted: Aug 08, 2012
National Team Manager Orders Pillars, Heartland To Play With What They Have
Super Eagles manager, Stephen Keshi, has told Kano Pillars and Heartland Football Clubs that none of their seven players in the national camp would be released to them for their Federation Cup semi-finals.
Keshi told the media that though it was unfortunate that the semi-final games of the competition which both teams would be involved in are coming up same day as the friendly against Niger in Niamey, the national team assignment supercedes clubs engagement and as such, he would not release any of the players except they fail to make the team.
“I wonder why the teams should be asking for the release of their players when they both registered about 30 players each for the season. They should be able to play the Federations Cup semi-finals without three or four of their players. Will they refuse to play if the players are indisposed or on trial abroad?," he asked rhetorically.
“There is no way I am going to release any of those players to play Federations Cup . The Niger match is more important than the clubs engagement and I have little time to prepare the team before we will travel next week for the match. So they should forget it and use what they have,” the former national team skipper stated.
Keshi also complained of the poor state of the practice pitch of the Abuja national stadium which has forced him to move the team’s training to the astro turf of the technical centre, noting that that it is a shame that he had to train on artificial turf for a match that will be played on natural grass.
He also declared that all his apprehensions about the state of the stadia in the country had fell on deaf ears, saying the situation is beginning to have adverse effect on the standard of the game.
The Delta state born coach further appealed to the authorities to do something about the state of pitches in the country, stressing that football is better played on natural grass than the artificial pitches that is now the order of the day in Nigeria.
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