• Thursday, July 18, 2024
businessday logo


2023 W/W Cup: FIFA’s decision to pay players directly will motivate youngsters, Akanni says

2023 W/W Cup: FIFA’s decision to pay players directly will motivate youngsters, Akanni says

Wahidi Akanni, an ex-international said that the decision of the Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) to pay players allowances directly, will motivate upcoming talents.

Akanni, a former Chairman of the Lagos State Football Association, said this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos on Wednesday.

NAN reports that FIFA announced that the 2023 World Cup prize money will be paid directly to the players without interference from a third party.

Fifa will pay out $152m (£122m) in total, more than three times more than the $50m (£40.2m) paid in 2019: $110m (£88.4m) is being put towards the performance-based fund.

While $11.5m (£9.3m) is being spent on the club benefits programme, and a further $30.7m (£24.5m) is being paid as preparation money.

Fatma Samoura, FIFA Secretary-General, said the policy change is due to unpaid allowance issues involving the Super Falcons of Nigeria.

Read also: 2023 FIFA WWC: African players to watch

“This will encourage players to focus on horning their competitive skills, the game will get more competitive because everyone wants to represent their country, so we will get the best of the best hands,” he said.

Akanni said FIFA’s decision was not an indictment on football administrators per say.

“This does not necessarily mean that football administrators are guilty of anything, I have been there and as an administrator so I understand.

“As long as football is being run by government, we will continue to have backlog of unpaid allowances and salaries, some players that played years ago are still being owed one allowance or the other.

“Once government changes nobody remember to pay; this is not peculiar to Nigeria, even South Africa, I hope this new decision by FIFA will take African administrators back to their drawing boards,” he said.

NAN reports that during the build up to the World Cup, Falcon’s Head Coach Randy Waldrum, had revealed that some players are owed “per diem and bonuses” from two years ago.