Yusuf battles Le Guen, Saintfiet for Nigeria job

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Yusuf battles Le Guen, Saintfiet for Nigeria job

Yusuf battles Le Guen, Saintfiet for Nigeria job
July 09
07:51 2016

The Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) ramped up its search for new manager for the Super Eagles as it finalised plans by naming Frenchman Paul Le Guen, Belgian Tom Saintfiet and the team’s caretaker coach Salisu Yusuf on its three-man shortlist on Friday.

Three-time African champions Eagles became managerless after former Nigeria midfielder Sunday Oliseh’s sudden resignation – after fallen out with his employers, citing contract violations, unpaid wages and a lack of support.

The NFF opted for the national Under-23 team coach Samson Siasia to lead the Eagles in their Gabon 2017 Africa Cup of Nations qualifying double-header against Egypt in March.

Record five-time African champions Egypt held Nigeria to a 1-1 draw in the first leg fixture in Kaduna – and won the return leg by a lone goal in Cairo.

However, the national football body appointed Oliseh’s assistant Yusuf on a caretaker basis, asking Siasia to focus his attention on the preparations for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, where Nigeria will represent Africa in the men’s football event alongside Algeria and South Africa.

The NFF said it got over 20 applications for the job before finalising the shortlist to three.

According to the NFF’s official website, Giovanni Solinas, Hey Antoine, Mark Wotte, Ernesto Calvinho, Dorian Marin, Miodrag Jesic, Perry Hansen, Ove Pedersen, Adebayo Kola, Sylvanus Okpala, Peter Ijeh, Vladimir Petrovic-Pizon, Lodewijk de Kruif, Kenichi Yatsuhashi, Bjorn Frank Peters and Ricki Herbert were among the managers who applied for the post.

Chairman of the Technical and Development Committee Chris Green said the federation would name a manager for the Eagles immediately after interviewing the shortlisted candidates.

“We set a criteria with which we evaluated the nearly two dozen applications and then agreed on the three persons that we shortlisted,” quoted Green as saying.

“The committee will meet on July 18 to interview the shortlisted candidates and immediately name the next Super Eagles coach.”

Former France defender Le Guen, 52, who is favourite for the job, has managed Rennes, Lyon, PSG and Glasgow Rangers. He helped Cameroon qualify for the 2010 World Cup in South Africa.

The former PSG star, who coached Oman for four year, is currently jobless.

Saintfiet, 43, has managed Namibia, Zimbabwe, Ethiopia, Yemen, Malawi and Togo.

Yusuf assisted Siasia and the late Stephen Keshi. The 54-year-old, who won the domestic league with Kano Pillars and Enyimba, Yusuf, 54, led the team to two friendly wins against Mali and Luxembourg in May.

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