Super Eagles captain Joseph Yobo has maintained he and his colleagues are not playing for the Super Eagles because of the money, but at the same time they will press for their entitlements while representing the country.
Yobo and his assistant, Mikel Obi, met with the leadership of the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) over an appearance fee for the World Cup-bound players following the guaranteed payment of $8m by FIFA for Nigeria’s participation at the Brazil 2014 World Cup which starts on Thursday.
In an audio interview sent by Eagles media officer, Ben Alaiya, Yobo confirmed the meeting over the team’s demand for an appearance fee for the World Cup and further revealed the meeting will continue.
“We don’t play for Nigeria because of money. But when you work somewhere, you are entitled to certain things. You can’t deprive players from asking for their rights, this is normal. We are not demanding for anything that we are not used to,” Yobo said.
“It was a very good meeting, a quiet meeting, but I’m highly disappointed that it came out in the media.
“Yes, there was a meeting. That’s very true and the meeting is going to continue.
“I have to make sure my players are happy as I’m captain of the national team and if the players are not happy, there is no way I can be happy.
He further assured: “There is no problem. We are ready to play for Nigeria. And we won’t let this to affect us.”
A member of the Sani Lulu-led immediate board of the NFF had exclusively disclosed to Complete Sports that the players were paid 25% of what the NFF received from FIFA for the country’s participation in the 2010 tournament in South Africa.
The players got an initial payment of $500,000 with the balance payment thereafter.Complete Sports could not however confirm if the Aminu Maigari-led current board of the federation which took over from the Sani Lulu board paid the balance of the money.