ABUJA (AFP) – Nigeria on Thursday sacked Stephen Keshi as national team coach, despite his side’s home win against Sudan that kept them in the running to defend their African title.
The Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) said after an emergency meeting that former coach Shuaibu Amodu would take temporary charge before a foreign manager is appointed.
The Super Eagles were rock bottom of Group A in qualifying for next year’s Africa Cup of Nations after winning just one point in three matches but a 3-1 win against Sudan in Abuja on Wednesday lifted them to third.
Speculation about 52-year-old Keshi’s future has refused to go away since the end of the World Cup finals in Brazil in July, where Nigeria reached the knockout stages of the competition.
Keshi’s three-year deal ran out after the return from South America while he lost the support of players after much-publicised rows with the likes of Emmanuel Emenike, Peter Odemwingie and Ikechukwu Uche.
His record of five defeats, five draws and just one victory in the last 11 matches has only compounded dissatisfaction and led to calls for him to quit.
In a statement, the NFF said Keshi and his coaching staff had led Nigeria to “glorious accomplishments” in the last three years and called the coach and his assistants “true national heroes”.