By Izuchukwu Okosi:
Former Super Eagles midfielder Friday Ekpo has vehemently condemned the lingering “war of words” between the Nigeria Football Federation and out-of-contract Super Eagles coach Stephen Keshi.
Keshi has been offered a new contract by the technical committee of the NFF, but the one-time Eagles boss has reportedly expressed his dismay at the terms of the new deal which some sections of the press quoted him as describing as a “Slave Contract”.
Ekpo who played for the Eagles alongside Keshi in the 80’s and early 90’s spoke to Completesportsnigeria.com on the subject.
“The issue of whether Stephen (Keshi) will be offered a new contract or not has gone on for too long. It has become a child’s play,” Ekpo began.
“One party has to take a drastic decision on whether this romance can go on or not. The constant war of words in the media between both parties is uncalled for. We shouldn’t be on this matter for this long.
Ekpo however seemed specific on Keshi bringing the contractual saga to an end by insisting that the achievements of the ‘Big Boss’ will remain indelible even in the minds of his fiercest critics.
“Keshi has won the African Cup of Nations as a player and coach. They are big achievements. So you can’t take it from the man (Keshi), he has done well despite not making it to the 2015 AFCON much to the disappointment of Nigerians.
“However, I don’t know the conditions of the new NFF offer. If Keshi doesn’t like the conditions, he should just go and leave the Super Eagles job alone. His coaching career will not end with the Super Eagles.
“Keshi has always told Nigerians of interest from countries like Burkina Faso, Ghana and so on, he could take up any of their national teams’ coaching roles,” Ekpo, a one-time Calabar Rovers midfielder who has been elected as board member in the Akwa Ibom State FA told Completesportsnigeria.com on Wednesday.
Completesportsnigeria.com learnt the leadership of the Nigeria Football Federation is expected to meet next week when a definite decision will be made on the Stephen Keshi contract situation.