Pinnick applauds FG’s intervention on COVID-19, clears air on Rohr’s contract
President of the Nigeria Football Federation Amaju Melvin Pinnick has lauded the efforts of the Federal Government of Nigeria(FGN) in containing the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic, describing measures taken so far as “effective and re-assuring”.
Speaking on Arise TV yesterday Pinnick said: “I want to commend the Federal Government for the efforts so far in tackling this pandemic. The Government’s strategy across all the States of the Federation has paid off and it is incumbent on all of us citizens to join the global army to fight this virus off the planet Earth.
“On our part at the NFF. We are working with stakeholders, taking a cue from (world football –governing body) FIFA to intervene in certain areas.
“As an individual, I have a foundation by the name Brownhill Foundation, which has taken measures to support what the Government is doing, but we don’t want to talk about this. We are doing what we can in Delta and Lagos States and some other places.”
On the impact of the pandemic on the Nigeria football sector, with the game having been shut down since 19th March 2020, Pinnick stated: “We will sit down with our (official premium) partners AITEO with regards to the AITEO Cup competition, to see how we can still put this year’s edition together.
“There is also the AITEO/NFF Awards (in its third edition). This year’s edition is meant to celebrate the Super Falcons. We have plans to celebrate them but we don’t know how to go about it. So, we will sit down with our sponsors to figure things out.”
On the ad-hoc committee set up by the football –ruling body to investigate the death of Nasarawa United FC player Chineme Martins and recommend appropriate safety, security and medical measures in the interest of the domestic game, Pinnick disclosed that the panel has finished its field work. “The committee has worked to an appreciable level; done with its report. The members have done a great job in a short time and I must commend them.
Meanwhile the NFF President also revealed the conditions in the new contract offered to Super Eagles coach Gernot Rohr.
Rohr has been at the helm of the national team since 2016 and his current contract is expected to expire in July.
On Monday, Pinnick disclosed the German coach has been offered a new deal which comes with receiving his salary in local currency (naira) and also staying in the West African country.
“We have told him. He must live in Nigeria. His salary will be in naira. He must go around the leagues and see how he can nurture the players,” Pinnick told Arise TV. “If he is able to accept it, we have a deal.
There are a lot of coaches that want to coach Nigeria.
“We will seek legal opinions on international coaches’ contracts. We shall also seek the opinion of the Sports Ministry. He should get the contract (with the new conditions) in about a week’s time so that he can revert after studying it.”
Rohr has enjoyed success with the Super Eagles since his arrival, guiding them to the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia and a third-place place finish at the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations in Egypt.
The three-time African champions are on course to qualify for the 2021 AFCON as they sit on top of Group L after securing back-to-back wins in their first two qualifying games.