Unity of purpose, love and bonding have been listed as factors that will help the Super Eagles fly into the second round of the World Cup starting with a needed win against Iceland, tomorrow.
NFF 1st Vice President, Seyi Akinwunmi underlined these factors at the Park Inn by Radisson, Prilbaltiyskaya, in St Petersburg, Russia. He told reporters that the players have held exclusively players only meeting and the snippets from those gatherings have given the federation strong reason to believe the team is very much on course.
Akinwunmi said, “We all came into Russia with some expectations and we are still holding on such beliefs. The loss to Croatia was not what anybody wanted but it did come. Naturally we have all had different phases of sadness but I can tell you that the players themselves have moved on strongly afterwards.
“They are determined to make it to the next round. They have put behind them the disappointment of defeat by Croatia and now ready to go for the maximum points in their remaining encounters.”
He said the NFF expects a match-winning performance from the three-time African champions against Iceland on Friday and noting that there is no iota of truth in the rumour making the rounds that the NFF and the players are reeling in disunity in Russia.
“The truth is that there is no crisis within the board of the NFF. As you would expect in a family, there may be issues, but the good thing is that we always iron them out and we bond together as a family.
“As a matter of fact, on Monday, we all came together and watched the matches together at our hotel; there is no crisis. I don’t want to think some section of the media derives joy in reporting about crisis just because it sells.”
He then added, “We are NFF and not Russia Football Federation and the issue of elections is not something we are concerned with at this World Cup; I’m surprised to hear that some persons are already campaigning but to who? I’m going to be part of those who are going to vote at the elections but nobody has campaigned to me here.”
He then assured Nigerians that the bond in the federation and the players’ camp will help see the Eagles through on Friday and give the entire country reason to celebrate.
Eagles will depart their Essentuki team base camp in the Stavropol region of Russia to Volgograd on Thursday, ahead ofFriday evening’s clash.