NFF President Amaju Pinnick has met with parents of some ravemaking Nigerian youngsters across plying their trade in England.
On his way to an official meeting with FIFA President, Mr. Sepp Blatter at the Home of FIFA on Wednesday morning, the NFF boss stopped over in the England capital and watched Sunday’s FA Cup fifth round match between Arsenal and Middlesbrough at the Emirates.
“I was able to see Kenneth Omeruo and Chuba Akpom at the match. I am meeting the parents of a number of these youngsters this time and have plans to meet all of them and also their parents in due course.
“You see, some of them might have represented England at junior level, but they are willing to represent Nigeria at senior level, and that is what we are looking at. We are looking at strengthening our teams at all levels and these players are willing, once we can convince them that there is a new set-up in Nigeria football.”
Pinnick’s diary has 18-year-old attacking midfielder, Alex Iwobi of Arsenal, who has joined up with the country’s Olympic Team ahead of their departure for an 11th All-Africa Games qualifying match against Gabon in Libreville on Saturday, as well as former Chelsea centre back Joshua Debayo, also 18, now on the books of another Premiership team, Southampton. Debayo is also an England U-18 international.
There are also Fejiri Okenabirhie, 19-year-old former Arsenal winger, now with Stevenage; 19-year old Brighton FC striker Chike Kandi, formerly with Chelsea FC and Chelsea and England U-19 defender Ola Aina, 18.
Mayowa Balogun, 18, is a versatile defender with Wigan Athletic FC while Arsenal defender Semi Ajayi is getting better by the day.