Amodu Shaibu will take charge of the Super Eagles, who face a fight to reach the Africa Cup of Nations, despite a win over Sudan on Wednesday
Stephen Keshi has been sacked as coach of the Nigeria, the Nigeria Football Federation announced on Thursday.
Amodu Shaibu, who has enjoyed four spells in charge of the Super Eagles, will lead a consortium of local coaches as the new head of the national team to replace Keshi and his assistants Daniel Amokachi and Ike Shorunmu. Shaibu will handle the team’s remaining Africa Cup of Nations qualification matches until a replacement is found.
Keshi’s job had come under intense scrutiny since the start of the qualifiers in September following the 3-2 defeat to Congo at home before picking one point in a draw against South Africa in Cape Town.
A further defeat in Khartoum to Sudan made his tenure look like coming to an inglorious end after a fairy tale year in which he led the Super Eagles to victory at the 2013 Afcon in South Africa.
The title defence in Morocco next year was looking bleak until Wednesday’s 3-1 victory over Sudan in Abuja restored a glimmer of hope, but it was not enough to save his job.
Keshi had also become embroiled in fights over players, with Villareal striker Ikechukwu Uche being accused of wanting to be begged to play for the country. However, the player denied the allegations.
However, the new NFF board was not convinced and has now relieved him of the job, urging him and his assistants to proceed on any training programme of their choice that would be funded by the federation as a form of gratitude to the “national heroes”.
Their exit means that former national team coach, Shaibu, who has been a part of the NFF in a technical role, will now return to the position for the next two matches against Congo and South Africa.
Shaibu will be supported by Salisu Yusuf, Gbenga Ogunbote and former goalkeeper Aloysius Agu until a foreign coach is recruited to handle the side.
The team also has a new co-ordinator in former international Garba Lawal, while Toyin Ibitoye is the new media officer and Godfirst Chike takes over as equipment manager.
The statement also announced the hiring of Samson Siasia as the U23 trainer. He returns to the side he led to an Olympic silver medal at the games in Beijing in 2008 and will be assisted by Fatai Amoo.
Keshi, 52, led Nigeria to their third African title last year, and became only the second person to win the trophy as a player and coach. He also took the team to the Round of 16 at the World Cup in Brazil as they equalled their best ever run.
He will be remembered for bringing into limelight several unknown players from the local league who have become heroes of the Nigerian game. However, he was also accused of favouritism by taking largely untested players to the World Cup and ignoring more experienced campaigners.