The Nigeria Football Federation abandoned the visiting Kenyan national team to its fate on Wednesday. The east Africans will play against the Super Eaglesin Saturday’s 2014 World Cup qualification match in Calabar, Cross River State.
The Harambee Stars arrived at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos via a Kenya Airways flight on Wednesday afternoon.
Expecting to be ferried to Calabar straight away in order to begin preparations for the crucial game, the east Africans were told that the only flight that goes to the city had departed and that they would need to wait till Thursday.
They then requested that a plane be chartered for them but did not get any response from an NFF official named Alataka who was communicating with them via telephone. They said that his mobile was unreachable for prolonged periods.
Terry also stated that as head of delegation, a separate saloon car should have been provided for him. However, the NFF did not do such and he had to share the team’s Coaster bus.
The Football Kenya Federation sent a letter of protest to the NFF. In the letter made available to Goal.com, the federation’s secretary general Michael Esokwa asked the NFF to urgently address the needs of the visiting team according to agreed terms.
While not wanting to waste the opportunity of acclimatising in the humid weather, they decided to find a football field to work out. They were taken to the Ajao Estate Primary School in Oshodi.
There the team, under the watchful eyes of coach Adel Amrouche, did light jogging and stretching exercises on the dusty grounds of the primary school.
Amrouche later told Goal.com that he wasn’t fazed by the poor reception that his team had been given. “T.I.A,” he said.
“This is Africa,” he explained before walking into the team bus.
Coach Adel Amrouche with captain Dennis Oliech
With the less than hospitable treatment that the east Africans have been given, many of the team officials are already talking about using it to turn the table against their opponents in Saturday’s encounter.
“We will spoil your party,” one official said. “That you’re the African champions makes us more motivated to defeat you.”
The Harambee Stars stretching inside the Ajao Estate Primary School
An accompanying journalist told Goal.com: “I love your country if this is how they treat visitors,” he said with sarcasm.
Celtic star Victor Wanyama with a team mate
The Kenyans will hope to get space on the Arik Air flight that departs for Calabar on Thursday in order to settle down in the Canaan City ahead of their game on Saturday.
For them, it’s far from Uhuru.
Source : GOAL.COM