Stephen Keshi claims to have not been paid since guiding the Super Eagles to victory in the 2013 African Cup of Nations (Afcon) in South Africa last February.
Cash-strapped Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) has not made secret their present financial woes and their commitment to the national football team at various level, but the issue of unpaid wages has hindered the nation’s football journey at critical times which has gotten over 160 million Nigerians jaw sagged.
Recent reports points accusing fingers at the coach as the mastermind behind Eagles’ Windhoek revolt over pay cuts, which landed Nigeria in Sao Paulo 37 hours before the Tahiti match, behind schedule, as they arrived last for the Confederations Cup and left too early.
However, Keshi has not made an official complaint but the NFF has disclosed to BBC Sport that they’ve been keeping a lid on the debt.
“Between the federation and the coaching crew, we don’t have a problem,” Musa Amadu, NFF Secretary General said.
“We’ve been working together with Stephen Keshi since November 2011 and he knows, the peculiar situation (financial problems) of how things are with the federation.”
“We try as much as possible to pay our obligations, likewise the coach, and we’ve had a very good working relationship.
“I know the coach will not bring to the fore any such matter,” added Amadu.
The NFF also owes money to assistant coach Daniel Amokachi and goalkeeper trainer Ike Shorunmu.
The football authority has acknowledged the debts owed to the coaches but believes they’ll have to keep been patriotic as has been the situation in the past and focus their attention on the African Nations Championship (CHAN) qualifying matches.
Unlike the coaching crew, the players have been different on wages. They’ve consulted at some point and have revolted at the other. Many in the football circle have described them as ‘money mongers,’ ‘unpatriotic’ and what have you.
These experienced coaches, ex-players likewise, have chosen to bear the pain but the NFF says they have to remain their best confidants at the difficult times and ignore the name calling that has popped up in several media.
“Perhaps there are people out there that want to capitalise on such matters to create problems between the federation and the coach,” Amadu said.
“But I know the obligations to the coaching crew are always settled, and we do have the understanding of the coaching crew in this regard.
“We appreciate the understanding and right now the focus is not about what is being written in the media but it is on the CHAN qualifiers.”
Nigeria takes on Ivory Coast on Saturday in the first-round, first leg of CHAN qualifiers.