Report: Lack of certifications destroys Finidi’s Super Eagles prospects?

Reports in the Nigerian media indicate that Finidi George has been ruled out of the race for the Super Eagles job. The position of the Super Eagles manager became vacant after the departure of Jose Peseiro, whose contract with the Nigerian Football Federation ran out in February.

As one of the assistants of the Portuguese that led Nigeria to a second-place finsish at the Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON 2024), George was tasked to act on an interim basis until a new manager was appointed and was in charge when Nigeria played international friendlies against Ghana and Mali in March.

The Super Eagles legend defeated Ghana but lost to Mali in his second game. Finidi has received numerous endorsements from former Nigeria internationals and prominent figures to secure the position. The former NFF boss, Amaju Pinnick, was the latest to throw his weight behind the 52-year-old.

However, the aspirations of Pinnick, along with those of many well-wishers of the Enyimba coach, may not come to fruition, as suggested by a source close to Nigeria's football governing body.

Concerns arise over Finidi George's qualifications and managerial style for Super Eagles role

Accoring to the official familiar with the matter, concerns have emerged regarding his qualifications and managerial style.

“He does not have a UEFA Pro license, what he has is a UEFA A license.” However, doubts extend beyond George's credentials to his performance as a coach.

The official continued, “His man-management during the matches in Morocco left a lot to be desired after he fell out with several of the players.”

Furthermore, criticisms were directed at George's decision-making abilities, particularly evident in the game against Mali.

“He was also found wanting as per his decisions, particularly the game against Mali when he made only two substitutions even with so many players on the bench, who did not play against Ghana,” the source revealed.

How many managers are currently interested in the vacant Super Eagles coaching job?

Reports suggest that former Super Eagles player Sylvanus Okpala has expressed his desire to fill the void vacated by Peseiro. Okpala represented Nigeria at the highest level, participating in the 1980 and 1988 Summer Olympics. He was also a key member of the Nigerian national team that clinched the prestigious African Cup of Nations title in 1980.

Also, rumoured to be interested in the job is Samson Siasia. Siasia is currently banned by FIFA from all football-related activities after being caught in the middle of a match-fixing investigation, which found him guilty of bribes in relation to the manipulation of matches.

The ban on the former Nantes striker will be lifted in August, and he hopes the NFF will pause the appointment of the new coach until then.

Salisu Yusuf, who replaced Siasia as the coach of the Super Eagles in 2016, boasts an impressive record. He won the Nigerian Professional Football League in 2008 and the FA Cup twice.

However, his reputation was tarnished in 2018 when he was implicated in bribery allegations involving CHAN Super Eagles players.

Finidi lacks credentials for Super Eagles job
Photo by Icon Sport

Michael Nsien, Daniel Amokachi, Ndubuisi Egbo, Emmanuel Amuneke, and Henry Makinwa have all been linked to the job.

The only non-Nigerian believed to be close to landing the job is Portuguese manager Antonio Conceicao.

The 62-year-old Portuguese is no stranger to the African terrain, having previously managed Cameroon.

Under his guidance, the Indomitable Lions finished third in the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations, a tournament they hosted.

When will the NFF announce the appointment of a new manager?

With the 2026 FIFA World Cup qualifiers approaching in June, during which the Super Eagles will face South Africa and Benin, the NFF is expected to name a new manager this month.

This will allow the new manager ample time to prepare for the upcoming tasks.

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Godfred Budu

Godfred Budu, a Ghanaian sports journalist, brings a dynamic perspective to the field with over a decade of experience. Having contributed to esteemed platforms such as Kickgh.com and Inkandkicks.com. Godfred is recognised for his insightful commentary and in-depth analysis of African football.
His passion for storytelling and commitment to accuracy have established him as a trusted authority in sports journalism in Ghana, captivating audiences with his engaging narratives and unparalleled expertise.
Godfred holds a degree in Integrated Development Studies (Social and Development Administration option) from the University for Development Studies, Ghana.