Nigeria Football Federation President Amaju Pinnick has hailed the Golden Eaglets ahead of their FIFA U-17 World Cup semi-final fixture against Mexico on Thursday.
The NFF boss departed for Chile on Monday evening, following the Eaglets’ 3-0 thrashing of three-time winners Brazil in the quarter-finals on Sunday.
“I am very excited with the way the team has played so far, raising our country’s flag very high. The head coach (Emmanuel Amuneke) has shown tremendous maturity and has managed the team and everything around it brilliantly," Pinnick told the NFF website.
“Amuneke is the kind of person you would naturally recommend for higher responsibilities. He has clearly rubbished all insinuations and dark innuendoes against him and has continued to do a marvelous job quietly. He has earned our respect.”
The Eaglets take on Mexico’s U-17 at the 30,000-capacity Estadio Municipal Ester Roa in Concepcion, with the prospect of a second-ever all-African final looming large in the South American nation.
Mali take on Belgium (the only European team left in contention) in Vina del Mar, which has become a home of sort to the Golden Eaglets and will host Sunday’s final.
Mali and Belgium play the first semi-final, starting from 5pm (9pm Nigeria time), before the Nigeria, Mexico clash that will again kick-off at midnight in Nigeria.
On Monday, NFF Deputy General Secretary, Dr. Emmanuel Ikpeme arrived in Chile to join the Golden Eaglets.