President of the Nigeria Football Federation, Amaju Pinnick, has absolved out-of-contract Super Eagles coach Stephen Keshi of any blames for Nigeria’s failure to qualify for the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations, rather blaming the players for the misfortune.
The 44-year old NFF President admits that Keshi has his inadequacies, but thinks the attitude of the players were not right and they probably played against the coach’s instructions.
“Anything that wants to happen happens and people should not start attributing it to him (the coach). He’s a human being and he might have his inadequacies just like everyone of us, but personally I do not think so.
“Look at the attitude of the players. A coach can tell the players ‘look at the tactics we want’ and they go there and do their thing.
“When we were in Congo, I called one of the players and sat him down and said ‘you were raging at the referee, what if he had given you a red card? We would have been depleted by one, do you know what would have happened to us?’ The attitude of the players is what we should emphasize on,” Pinnick told Lagos-based Cool FM.
This should come as some respite for Stephen Keshi, who is yet to officially vacate the Super Eagles coaching position, and is known to have a dour relationship with Pinnick.