The Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) has moved to explain the sack of Sylvanus Okpala who was eased out as an assistant coach of Nigeria’s senior national team.
Okpala was sacked on Monday night.
A member of the NFF, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said Okpala was sacked “for gross misconduct and disrespect towards the president of the federation.”
“At the 2013 Afcon in South Africa, there was some misbehaviour on the part of Okpala, who also disrespected the authorities (NFF). He was issued a query to explain his conduct but he said his lawyers would have to look at the query first. He never replied the query and so we had no choice but to give him the boot.
“Also, he was severally disrespectful to the president of the federation too,” the NFF official told supersport.com.
Sources close to supersport.com insists that Okpala had always been in the “bad books” of the NFF and only stayed on as assistant coach of the Super Eagles because of his closeness to the former Director-General of the National Sports Commission, Dr Patrick Ekeji.
With Ekeji leaving his post as NSC chief this week, it was only a matter of time before the coach fell on his sword.
Okpala has now taken the time to respond to the news of his sack.
“I am surprised at this because as I speak to you, no one from the NFF has given me a sack letter.
“And when the NFF people say I was disrespectful to president, Aminu Maigari, they should be specific and say what exactly I did that constitutes to disrespecting him.
“They have also accused me of misconduct in South Africa during the Nations Cup. Let them tell Nigerians what I did at the Nations Cup. Until then, I have no comment to make,” Okpala told supersport.com on Wednesday.