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Soccer: Nigeria-Guatemala Off, Iceland Shaky

Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) last night confirmed that the much touted international friendly match against Guatemala has been called off.

The friendly match set back came on the heel of the denial of US visa to two members of the national team by the American Embassy in Abuja on Monday ahead of the US President’s Tournament in Dallas, also this month.

Assistant coach Salisu Yusuf and Gbolahan Salami, were denied visas and have been asked to appeal Thursday for their cases to be reconsidered.

But what hit the NFF like a mallet was the question mark on the Guatemalan match billed for Miami, Florida on February 9 after preparation has been stepped up for the match.

NFF spokesman Ademola Olajire confirmed the fears of many Nigerians when he said that the Guatemalans had asked for the match to be moved to the next FIFA window on March 29.

Though NFF is working to salvage the February window by working on new prospects, Iceland, one of the countries approached by Nigeria, said the notice was too short to travel to Nigeria. Apart from that they were asking for players insurance, a condition which NFF said can not be met at this time.

Nigeriais now touted to be considering Republic of Benin and Tanzania, among other minnows, to play next Wednesday.

Olajire said that the agent organising the Guatemalan fixture informed the Nigerian federation that doubts about the legality of the NFF as a result of the series of court processes instituted against it forced the cancellation.

Nigerian team had been offered five-star accommodation and business class flight tickets to honour the match.


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Posted by on Feb 2 2011. Filed under Headlines, Soccer, Sports. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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