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Fifa order Nigerian government to back down on national-team ban
Press Association - 4 years ago

Fifa have demanded that the Nigerian government withdraw their ban on the national team playing international football and has given them until Monday to comply.

The Nigeria president, Goodluck Jonathan, has imposed the two-year sanction as punishment for the team's poor World Cup campaign. That breaks Fifa's rules on government interference in the running of national associations and the world governing body says that unless Nigeria back down, the federation will be suspended.

"Fifa have today sent a letter to the Nigeria Football Federation indicating that the government of Nigeria has until Monday at 6pm to cancel its direction to withdraw Nigeria's participation from all Fifa and Caf competitions for the next two years," Fifa's communications director, Nicolas Maingot, confirmed. "Failure to do so will lead to the suspension of the NFF. Also the management committee set up by the Nigeria government will not be recognised by Fifa.

"Fifa executive committee member, Dr Amos Adamu, [from Nigeria] will be in Nigeria on Monday for a last mediation attempt."

Suspension would cover national team and club matches in African competitions, referees as well as the funds that flows from Fifa to national associations.

Maingot added: "A suspension goes beyond the suspension of the national teams. It also freezes financial help and no referees can participate in international competition."

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