Abuja - The delegation of U-17 National Team, Golden Eaglets, departed for
the Four-Nation Suwon Invitational Tournament on Sunday without team captain
Kelechi Nwakali and coordinator Prince Udofia.
Thenff.com learnt that the Embassy of Korea Republic in Nigeria
had returned the passports of the Eaglets' skipper and team coordinator as
‘unreadable’ – a rather strange explanation given that the two persons had been
traveling with the same passports for years now.
“We don’t know what they mean by ‘unreadable’ because the player,
Nwakali and the team coordinator, Udofia, have been using these same passports
without any issues.
“In any event, we are working hard to see what we can do and make
the Embassy issue visas to these two persons on Monday, so that they can travel
on Tuesday to join the Golden Eaglets' delegation,” said an NFF protocol
Also read: NFF confident that Eaglets will do well
The development meant 17 players traveled by Qatar Airways on
Sunday, to arrive at Korea Republic’s capital, Seoul on Monday evening for the
tournament that the NFF believes will stoke competition spirit in the Eaglets
ahead of their defence of the FIFA U-17 World Cup title in Chile in seven
Nigeria play hosts Korea, Croatia and Brazil at the Four-Nation
tournament, which the Golden Eaglets also took part in ahead of their triumph
at the FIFA U-17 World Cup hosted by the Koreans in 2007.
Meanwhile, Chairman of Nationwide League
One, Alhaji Ahmad Kawu on Sunday led the Golden
Eaglets to the Tournament in South Korea as its leader of
Kawu was also with the Coach Emmanuel Amuneke-led
side when they went on two-match tour of Cairo in 2014 as well as
the 2015 African U-17 Championship in Niger. He led
the team out of Nigeria via Murtala Muhammed
Airport aboard Qatar Airways to Doha where they would take
a connecting flight to Korea.
Before leaving Nigeria, Amuneke reiterated that the
tournament was going to be a good test run for the Eaglets' Class of 2015.
"We are going to Korea not just for the fun of it," he
told the players during the last training session In Abuja on Saturday.
"We are going to meet other teams that have also qualified for the World
Cup and that means we have to work hard."