Nigeria to appoint foreign coach after dismal World Cup qualifiers

Wilfred Ndidi of Nigeria in action against David Kiki of Benin. File photo

Nigeria’s Football Federation (NFF) have decided to appoint a foreign coach for the national team after a dreadful start to their qualifying campaign for the 2026 World Cup.

The decision to look abroad is a reversal of last month’s appointment of a local coach that was initially applauded by Nigerian fans before Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) and World Cup qualifiers.

“The Executive Committee resolved to employ an expatriate Technical Adviser for the Super Eagles in the coming weeks, ahead of the (2025) AFCON qualifiers and the remaining FIFA World Cup qualifying matches,” according to an NFF statement.

In May, former Ajax winger Finidi George was appointed as the country’s new coach after the Portuguese Jose Peseiro ended his time with Nigeria after he led the team to the final of the Africa Cup of Nations earlier this year.

Monday’s 2-1 defeat by Benin leaves the Super Eagles second from bottom in Group C with just three points from four matches, four points behind Rwanda, South Africa and Benin.

Only the nine group winners will qualify automatically for the expanded 48-team World Cup which is to be held in the USA, Canada and Mexico.

The four best group runners-up will go forward to a play-off which will take one of them through to an inter-confederation play-offs.

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