Samson Siasia

Nigeria U23 coach Samson Siasia has raised alarm over the sloppy preparation of his team barely 10 days to the start of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games.

Players and staff of the Dream Team VI have been camped in Atlanta, USA ahead of their opening group B clash against Japan on August 4. But Siasia has lamented the complete abandonment of his team by the government, Vanguard writes.

The former Eagles coach said the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) owes him and the other coaches five months’ salary arrears, while no allowance has been paid to the team in the last five months. He added that the coaches and the players have been training on ‘empty stomach’ since they opened camp in Atlanta.

“We are being owed backlog of allowances and wages in the last five months. No single kobo has been pay to the team as at today. I’m pleading with the NFF and the Ministry of Sports to pay us our salaries,” Siasia said.

“They should pay us before the Olympics. We are suffering. No fund at all, even we have not received the tickets to go to Brazil from here. The team has suffered too much. There is no encouragement to show for our patriotism to the country.

“We will not hold the country to ransom by threatening not to play our matches, but the government has to come to our rescue. I know that by the time the Olympics will be over, our monies will not be paid,”

Siasia and the lads leave for Brazil Friday as Nigeria look to repeat the historic feat of 1996 where they became the first African country to win gold in Olympic football.