FIFA announce they have sent a letter to the Nigerian Football Federation (NFF) after “great concern” arose involving heavy governmental influence on the country’s soccer management.
According to multiple reports which prompted a media release by FIFA, Nigeria are at risk for FIFA sanctions after the country’s sport minister Tammy Danagogo appointed the next NFF president, Lawrence Longyir Katken.
The appointment came a day after a court fired the entire NFF executive committee following a complaint by Nigerian Premier League team Nembe City.
With the executive committee out of work, Danagogo appointed Katken as acting secretary general until the situation was resolved. FIFA’s release said:
“FIFA will not recognize any person or organ not elected in compliance with the NFF statutes (article 17, par 2 and 3 of the FIFA Statutes) and therefore it will not consider the appointment made by the Minister of Sports. An elective Congress has been duly convened by the NFF for 26 August 2014 and only decisions and persons elected then will be considered legitimate. “
Such governmental interference has in the past earned countries bans from international play. Nigeria faced a similar warning after the 2010 World Cup, but they did not receive a ban.
Nigerian players were also involved in problems with World Cup benefits both immediately before and during the competition, with rumors that the players would boycott games. Those rumors never came to fruition.
Despite sitting at the top of the table in the Premier League, things are not going well for Manchester City.
Star striker and leading goalscorer Sergio Aguero suffered a torn hamstring while playing for Argentina, and now he is joined by David Silva on the injured list.
Silva lasted nine minutes in Spain’s EURO qualifying match against Luxembourg, forced off after taking a bad challenge from behind. Silva went down in pain and tried to play on, but asked for a substitution just minutes later.
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Spanish news outlet AS is reporting that Silva has suffered “lateral internal ligament damage in his right ankle,” and could face 2-3 weeks on the sidelines.
With Aguero set to miss at least a month, Silva’s injury could leave Manchester City without two of their top players in the coming weeks.
Silva has arguably been the best player in the Premier League this season, the quarterback of the City attack, which has scored a league-leading 19 goals through eight matches.
City travels to Old Trafford for the Manchester derby on October 25, which falls into that 2-3 week range for Silva’s recovery. In a match that could decide who sits top of the table, Manuel Pellegrini would be very shorthanded without Silva and Aguero.
Alejandro Bedoya will not feature for the United States in the CONCACAF playoff against Mexico on Saturday, and has been replaced on the roster by Bobby Wood.
Bedoya traveled to Los Angeles from his club team Nantes in France, but Jurgen Klinsmann has announced he will be unable to play after falling ill.
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Without Bedoya, Union Berlin midfielder Bobby Wood has been added to the USMNT side. Wood scored the first two goals of his international career this summer in wins over the Netherlands and Germany, and has scored four goals in ten matches for Union Berlin this season. Wood has been training with the U.S. camp throughout the week for the upcoming friendly against Costa Rica.
Bedoya has played well for the USMNT, discounting his short performance against Brazil in September. In that match, Klinsmann played Bedoya out of position against a potent Brazil attack, and he was substituted before halftime. However, playing in his more natural role as a winger or attacking midfielder, many believed Bedoya could be in line for a start against Mexico.