The dispute over player bonuses that threatened Nigeria’s participation in the Confederations Cup does not seem to be fully resolved, captain Vincent Enyeama suggested on Sunday.
The dispute, which to all intents and purposes appeared to be settled on Friday, has only been resolved ‘for now’, Enyeama emphasised in a media briefing on Sunday.
The impasse with the Nigeria Football Federation has overshadowed the African champions’ final preparations for the tournament, which is being used a test of Brazil’s preparations for the 2014 World Cup, and they only arrived in the early hours of Sunday.
“I don’t really want to talk about this issue, it should not have gone into the press and I don’t want to elaborate on it much,” said Enyeama, who was sitting alongside coach Stephen Keshi at the team’s media briefing.
“It went on for the last four days and we don’t want to spend our energy on it now. It is over for now, it is settled for now, but after the championship we will revisit it. But for now it’s done and we will concentrate on the match with Tahiti.”
The Super Eagles had been promised $10,000 for each win in the tournament and $5,000 for a draw, but the impoverished football association said just before the team were due to fly to Brazil it could not afford that level of bonuses and would cut them in half.
The players refused to leave their hotel in Windhoek, Namibia, where they drew with Namibia in a World Cup qualifier last week, and their participation in the Confederations Cup was in doubt.
FIFA secretary-general Jerome Valcke said on Friday the matter had been resolved and Nigeria duly arrived in Brazil on Sunday.
Keshi, who refused to criticise his players for their actions, said he was concerned they may feel fatigued.
“I am a bit worried by fatigue but I am not upset with my players. It depends on how you look at the situation,” Keshi said.