Coach Stephen Keshi is not a happy man at the moment not because his team is not doing well but because his employers, the Nigeria Football Federation still owes him backlog of salaries.
A source close to the coach told our correspondent that the federation has not paid the tactician since the last Africa Nations Cup in February.
The source said the federation has blamed the delays due to the dire financial situation in the Glass House and Keshi has been forced to carry on with his assignment without an issue out of the ugly situation.
It will be recalled that the salary of the coach became an issue before the start of the Nations Cup before a last minute intervention ensured the coach was paid before the start of the tournament but the source said the
desire to succeed on his job has made the coach to keep quiet all this while.
“Yes, I can confirm to you that since they returned from the Nations Cup, the federation has not paid one kobo into Keshi’s account as his salary. In fact, they kept singing the same song and Keshi has not come out to complain because he promised them he would not do that anymore after what happened before the Nations Cup when he spoke to the media about it.
“I think NFF is not fair to Keshi. I don’t think any coach can accept what they are doing to him. How can coaches go three four months without getting a kobo as salaries and still carry on as if nothing has happened?” he asked.
The source revealed that though NFF has promised to offset the salary arrears of the coach shortly after the ongoing 2014 FIFA Confederations Cup hoping to pay from Confederations Cup windfall.
FIFA pays each team that participates in the competition a graduated amount of money beginning from $1.7 million (about N272 million) for the first stage depending on the progression of the team.
“They have promised to clear that outstanding salary after the tournament but we only hope they would keep their promise,” he said.
Meanwhile, the source also revealed that the issue of match bonus was not the key reasons why the Super Eagles players revolted before they departed for Brazil for Confederations Cup. According to him, the players were more miffed with the manner the federation eased out former assistant coach, Sylvanus Okpalla.
“Many people did not know what went down during that period. We are just painting a picture of the players being greedy, but it is far from that. The players were not agitating for match bonus alone but the manner with which NFF handled the team since after the Nations Cup. It did not go down well with them, especially some senior members of the team.
“The players were not happy about the way NFF asked Okpalla to go and how they forced Keshi to accept to pay his assistant, Valerie from his own pocket. The players told NFF that as African champions the team should be treated with some respect not in the manner the federation is going about it,” he said.