Abuja - Emmanuel Ikpeme, the Director, Technical Committee of the Nigeria Football Association (NFA), says the association has subjected some of the U-15 players to Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) examination.
According to him, the MRI test is a directive from the Confederation of African Football (CAF) to ensure that players participating in the Africa Youth Championship (AYC) are not older than 17 years.
Ikpeme said it did not matter if they were selected by the association for the test, adding that “whether they are U-13, U-14 or U-15, the fact remains that they are still U-17’’.
He said the U-15s are good players and the NFA had decided to subject them to the test to ensure progression and early exposure when they participate in age group competitions.
“So, there should not be any problem with regards to whether we have decided to use some of our U-15 players to be part of that examination.
``The fact remains that they are U-17 and they are good players and we want to see that they are as early as possible exposed to international competitions to build confidence at a tender age.
“So we are subjecting all our players, provided that they are U-17, to the MRI test.
``At the end of the day, we will get the required number and then they will start camping next week in Calabar,” Ikpeme said.
The director said the association would not accept over-age players in any age grade competition, adding that it did not help the development of football.
He said that before now, the association only used birth certificates tendered by the players to determine their age and also visit their schools.
Ikpeme dismissed insinuations that the association was using over-age players in the national teams.