The Nigeria Football Federation has confirmed the reinstatement of Coach Salisu Yusuf to his position as Assistant Coach of the Super Eagles and Head Coach of the Super Eagles B team.
According to a statement issued on Thursday by the NFF’s Director of Communication, Ademola Olajire, the Executive Committee of the NFF has approved the reinstatement and it is with effect from 1st November 2021.
General Secretary of the NFF, Mohammed Sanusi, disclosed on Thursday that the reinstatement of the former Kano Pillars, Enyimba FC and Rangers International FC gaffer by the NFF Board was on the recommendation of the NFF Technical Department.
Though highly respected for his match–reading ability, calm demeanour and proficiency in talent discovery and development, Yusuf was in the eye of the storm when four years ago he was filmed in a sting operation collecting ‘bribes’.
Yusuf, who in his playing days featured for Ranchers Bees of Kaduna and El-Kanemi Warriors of Maiduguri, among others, was caught on camera taking cash from men posing as football agents, who requested that two players be selected for a continental championship.
The names of the players were not disclosed and Yusuf denied any wrongdoing.
In that video documentary filmed by Anas’ Tiger Eye PI agency in September 2017, the Nigerian coach was seen collecting cash from undercover journalists, who posed as agents seeking to influence players’ selection at the WAFU tournament hosted in Ghana.
After appearing before a panel set up by the NFF, the veteran coach was slammed with a one year ban as well as a $5,000 fine.
While the NFF tried to reinstate Yusuf immediately after he served out his ban in September 2019, the move was hurriedly jettisoned due to negative reactions that greeted the plan.
The 59-year old manager was then hired by the Nigeria Professional Football League side, Rangers International, with whom Yusuf worked for the past two seasons.
Yusuf’s return to the three-time African champions coincides with the closing stages of the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 qualifying second round phase and the commencement of preparations for the 33rd Africa Cup of Nations finals taking place in Cameroon early next year.
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