Olympic football: Siasia backs players’ boycott of quarter-final 

Samson Siasia

Nigeria Dream Team VI coach, Samson Siasia, says he is totally in support of his team’s resolve to boycott Saturday’s quarter-final clash against Denmark.

The players had threatened not to honour Wednesday’s last group game with Colombia if not for the intervention of the gaffer.

This was due to the appalling state of the team who are yet to receive their promised bonuses despite qualifying as Group B winners.

The Nigerian contingents only arrived Manaus for their first game against Japan few hours before the game following a torrid training camp in Atlanta, United States of America (USA).

But Siasia who claims to be owed five months’ salary by the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) declared that his hands were tied should his lads decide to yet again carry on with their proposed plan to snub the game against the Europeans.

The former Super Eagles coach lamented the dreadful experience of his team who he says have been “disrespected” by both the Sports Ministry and NFF.

“We have been disrespected from all angles – the sports ministry, the Nigeria Football Federation. Is that how you will treat your own children? We are not street kids,” Siasia moaned in an interview with local radio station, Brila FM sports radio Friday morning.

“We have only been paid allowances for 11 days. There is no match bonus. What of all the months we have been training in Nigeria and Atlanta? That’s not fair.

“I have not received my salary for the past five months.

“Everything is upside down and the boys don’t want to play anymore. Whatever they want to do, I’m with them. They are right for fighting for their rights.”

Siasia continued: “The country already has a bad image, but through football it has got some good image, but still they won’t let us play.

“I have begged these boys, but I cannot do more than what I have done to get this team up to this point.

“I have done my best and now I am tired.”