In a surprising turn of events, Super Eagles manager Jose Peseiro has openly revealed his decision to decline a contract renewal from the Nigerian Football Federation.
This unexpected development has sparked widespread attention and speculation within the Nigerian football community, shedding light on the intricacies of managerial decisions and their implications for the sport.
He has managed to get the Super Eagles into the Round of 16 after placing second behind Equatorial Guinea.
Peseiro and his charges billed to play the Indomitable Lions of Cameroon on Saturday January 27.
Peseiro's Super Eagles future decided after AFCON 2024
Ahead of the 2024 Africa Cup of Nations, the future of the Super Eagles manager remained a topic of keen interest and speculation.
Against the backdrop of Nigeria's campaign in the qualifiers, the Minister of Sports Development, John Enoh, had previously conveyed that Peseiro's fate would be deliberated upon only after the end of AFCON 2024.
His statement cast a shadow of uncertainty over Peseiro's tenure.
Peseiro agreed to salary cut in new contract in September
Amidst the intricate web of developments surrounding the Super Eagles' leadership, September 2023 witnessed an intriguing twist as Jose Peseiro, the esteemed coach of the Nigerian national team, opted to prolong his tenure.
This extension, however, came with a notable adjustment, as Peseiro engaged in negotiations that resulted in a substantial reduction in his monthly salary.
Despite initial remuneration of US$70,000, Peseiro's restructured contract indicated a reduced monthly income of approximately US$50,000.
Peseiro slams misleading Nigeria media
Peseiro found himself compelled to address the pervasive misinformation surrounding his tenure. Speaking candidly to the press, Peseiro expressed his frustration with the proliferation of inaccurate narratives regarding his role in Nigeria.
In an effort to set the record straight, he highlighted the detrimental impact of these misleading stories, particularly in their amplification by European media outlets.
He said: “There are many difficulties, but I have never exposed them, and I will not expose them. There is so much misleading information.
“Will I continue leading the team? I have a contract until the end of the AFCON, they already proposed renewal, but I didn’t want it.”
His revelation about declining a contract renewal further added a layer of complexity to the narrative, hinting at underlying intricacies that shaped his future with the Super Eagles.
Peseiro's take on Osimhen
Reflecting on the upcoming match against the Cameroonians, Peseiro expressed confidence in Victor Osimhen's prowess and pivotal role within the team.
Emphasising the significance of Osimhen's contributions, Peseiro's remarks shed light on the forward's instrumental impact and the team's collective aspirations for success in the midst of formidable competition.
Osimhen has faced scrutiny for his inability to capitalise on opportunities during Nigeria's three group matches at the ongoing AFCON.
However, Peseiro provided assurance to Nigerians, affirming that the Napoli star would deliver a strong performance on Saturday.
“For our next match, Osimhen will score; he’s important for the team. He’s the top scorer, but this is a different tournament and tough competition,” he continued.
“He deserves to reach the top position because against Equatorial Guinea, he created so many chances and he scored.”
Peseiro's stats as Super Eagles manager
Since assuming office as the manager of the Super Eagles on May 15, 2022, Peseiro has supervised 18 games and has recorded eight wins, four draws and endured six defeats.
With this stats, it is unclear whether the Portuguese will continue as the manager of the Super Eagles after AFCON 2024.
There is a possibility, though, on condition that he can restore the Super Eagles to international glory.