By Richard Jideaka, Abuja:
The Minister of Youth and Sports Solomon Dalong has invited 17 members of the 1985 FIFA U-17 World Cup-winning Golden Eaglets at the instance of the Presidency for a delayed befitting reception on November 29.
Completesportsnigeria.com reports that in 1985 President Mohammed Buhari who was then Nigeria’s military head of state had directed that the Eaglets led by Nduka Ugbade be honoured by their respective state governments. The directive was however not fulfilled before the Buhari government was overthrown.
Thirty years on, President Buhari now wants to fulfil that promise following the victory of another set of Golden Eaglets in Chile this month.
Subsequent upon President Buhari’s pledge to host the two sets of Eaglets with other athletes who won laurels for the country in recent times, the National Sports Commission has sent a list of 17 players of the 1985 squad to the Nigeria Football Federation for confirmation and invitation.
The players who made history by winning Nigeria its first global title in football include Bella Momoh, Victor Igbinoba, Salisu Nakande, Babatunde Joseph, Nduka Ugbade, Fatai Atere, Binebi Numa, Lucky Agbonsevbafe and Duere Tonworimi.
Other members of the squad are Jonathan Akpoborie, Sani Adamu, Amapakabor Imama, Baldwin Bazuaye, Hillary Adiki, Dele Abubakar, Chukwuma Nwoha and Mohammed Yahaya.
The last member of the team defender Kingsley Aikhionbare died some years back and will represented by a member of his family.
“We have sent the list of the 1985 squad and their contact addresses to the NFF to authenticate and invite them for a reception on November 29. We are glad that Mr. President chose to remember the boys that first put our name on the world map with that feat in China,” an NSC official told Completesportsnigeria.com.
Also invited are the Chief Coach of the team Sebastain Broderick Imasuen and his coaching crew members.