The boss of the football governing body has expressed his pleasure with the facilities to host the Super Eagles’ Afcon qualifying game
The President of Nigeria Football Federation (NFF), Amaju Pinnick, has described Samuel Ogbemudia stadium in Benin as ‘world-class’.
The Super Eagles are scheduled to take on Sierra Leone in an Africa Cup of Nations qualifying game at the venue on November 13.
The 15,000 seater capacity stadium is wearing a new look following renovation carried out by the Edo State Government.
Pinnick, who inspected the venue ahead of the Super Eagles game, expressed his delight with the improved facilities he met on the ground.
”There is a tremendous improvement compared to the last time I came, the turf is very brilliant, it’s what you see in world-class facilities. I thank the government of Edo for this facility and we are proud of this achievement,” Pinnick told NAN.
“The Super Eagles can’t wait to come and play in the state. I’m in touch with the players, who are all excited to be here to play for the country especially, Ahmed Musa, the captain of the team, whose mother is from Edo and he is anxious to play for the nation and his State.
“The NFF will move into the state on Friday, November 9, while the players will start arriving from November 11 and after the game, make preparations to fly to Sierra Leone on Friday or Saturday after the game.
“I will communicate all I have seen here to the Ministry of Youth and Sports and also the Executive Committee. I am happy with what we have seen here today and the Super Eagles will be playing here for a long time.
“We’ve always been thankful to Edo government for being there for the Nigeria football federation, and we thank them for that generosity at every point in time because these are very sensitive times.”
Pinnick also revealed the federation will allow fans into the stadium but at a reduced seating capacity and will adhere strictly to Covid-19 guidelines.
“We are also working because there have been a lot of people coming into the stadium, we have to observe the Covid-19 protocol to the letter. They have written to us officially, this is about a 15,000 sitting capacity stadium,” he continued.
“They want about 6,000 to 7,000 where they will sit out to observe social distancing, so we are going to look at it, we will send a letter to the ministry and also send a letter to Presidential Task Force, once we get the approval within the next two days we will send.
“I have already spoken to Caf, we will send a representative of Caf and I will want a situation whereby people will see a decent crowd in the stadium in a very competitive game in Edo.
“We are working towards reducing every mistake humanly and materially possible and ensure we have success.”
Nigeria currently lead Group L with six points after securing victories against the Republic of Benin and Lesotho.
The Super Eagles played friendlies against African champions Algeria and Tunisia in October as part of their preparations for Sierra Leone.