Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) has agreed to extend the contract of Super Eagles coach Jose Peseiro. The NFF in a virtual meeting on Sunday, July 16, agreed to the coach’s contract extension but on a reduced pay way less than his current package of $70,000 a month, which makes him the third-highest-earning coach in Africa.
According to New Telegraph, Peseiro’s contract as the coach of the senior national team of Nigeria expired at the end of June, a little over a month after he helped the team qualify for the Africa Cup of Nations in Ivory Coast in January, with a game to spare. Some board members kicked against the idea of keeping the handler of the three-time African champions but they were quickly reminded that there could be a legal tussle if he is sacked after qualifying for the AFCON because his contract mandates him to win the next AFCON or get sacked. Secondly, he is being owed backlogs of unpaid salaries which the football house must pay.
In the event of his sack and the employment of a new coach. NFF will be paying the new coach, as well as Peseiro, a scenario that played out with erstwhile coach Gernot Rohr and is partly responsible for their current financial woes. The draft of the proposed new contract has been sent to the Portuguese coach leaving the decision of accepting the terms in his hands. A reply is said to be expected by the end of July.
However, incase both parties are not able to reach an agreement on a new contract, and should the NFF allow the 63-year-old leave, several reports claim that the NFF will focus on local replacements, with current assistant coach George Finidi, Sunday Oliseh and Emmanuel Amunike the front runners.
The NFF announced the appointment of the former Saudi Arabia and Venezuela coach as the new coach of the Super Eagles on May 22, 2022, replacing Austin Eguavoen, who returned to his Technical Director role at the federation.
Eguavoen acted in an interim role following the sacking of Franco-German Gernot Rohr in December 2021, and helped the team reach the round of 16 at the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations, but failed to qualify for the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, BSN Sports reports.
The Eagles have exhibited underwhelming performances under the tutelage of the Portuguese as they have only won three of the eight games that the 67-year-old manager had taken charge of, losing the remaining five, with the side scoring 15 goals and conceding 11.
It was under Peseiro that the Eagles recorded their worst run in 42 years as the three-time Africa champions lost four consecutive games, including a shock 1-0 defeat to minnows and 118th-ranked Guinea-Bissau in Abuja last March in a 2023 AFCON qualifier.
The Eagles were ranked 30th in the FIFA rankings when the Portuguese took over in May 2022, but Nigeria’s Super Eagles have moved up to 39th Spot in the latest FIFA ranking released by the world football governing body on June 29, 2023.
Amazingly, the Super Eagles, who were ranked 40th in the world in the ranking released in May, gained six points and moved to 39th.
It is worthnoting that the Eagles’ rise in the rankings was largely due to their impressive performance in the recent Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers against Sierra Leone in the month under review. Jose Peseiro’s men defeated the Leone Stars 3-1 in the game played in Liberia.