Former Nigeria International, Segun Odegbami, has confirmed his interest to enter for the FIFA presidency race.
Odegbami, with his declaration, becomes the second Nigerian after ex-Governor Orji Uzor Kalu to declare his intention to succeed the current FIFA boss, Sepp Blatter.
Odegbami, like other aspirants, his professing the need for change in the world body even as he expressed optimism that he would get the necessary backing to take a shot at football’s most coveted administrative position.
A fresh election to select a new head for FIFA will be held on February 26, 2016 and despite the likes of Uefa President Michel Platini and South Korea’s Chung Mong-joon seen as early favourites, Odegbami said he is ready to take a shot at the hot seat.
The current scandal at Fifa is the organisation’s worst crisis in its 111 years of existence, Odegbami said in a statement.
“Moving forward, Fifa thus requires a new era of leadership that can restore the dignity of the noble sport.
“The world is very interested in who becomes the next president of Fifa, considering the present images and state of this institution.
“I see myself fitting into this role.”
Odegbami added that his bid will have the “highest sense of responsibility, integrity, transparency, probity and accountability”.
He also said he intends to create a “new and optimistic future for football that focuses on human, infrastructural, social and community development across the world”.
Like Liberia FA president Bility before him, Odegbami says it is high time Fifa was led by an African.
“The choice of an African, specifically a Nigerian, may look far-fetched in this pursuit, noting the international coverage of Fifa and the historical trend in its leadership reputation,” Odegbami said.
“However, a closer scrutiny of the international football environment reveals the real possibility of such change.”
Odegbami, who played for Nigeria between 1976 and 1981, says he has already informed the Nigeria Football Federation of his intentions.
Since hanging his boots as a professional player, Odegbami has remained in football circles with regular contributions as a journalist and football commentator.
“Football is what my entire life has revolved around,” he said.
“My life’s ambition has always been to use football to make a difference in my local space and across the world.”