Some officials of Nigeria’s Under-23 football team to the 2016 Rio Olympic Games have already received their cash from the $390,000 donated to the team by a Japanese admirer at the games. Each official is believed to have received $14,000.
Sources at the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) Glass House secretariat in Abuja hinted that the cash backup for the cheques has finally come through more than two months after the donation and already a number of officials have received their payments.
Wealthy Japanese surgeon, Katsuya Takasu, was highly impressed with the performance of the Samson Siasia-led team to Rio 2016 despite the many hurdles they faced and wrote out two cheques, one in favour of Siasia and the other for Chelsea star John Mikel Obi.
The team agreed that the players be paid by Mikel, while Siasia sort out the officials. The documentation for the cheque in Mikel’s name is expected to be completed this week for the players to also smile to the bank shortly.
Both players and officials had earlier expressed fears after the long delay it took to cash the cheques. Nigeria finished third at the Rio Olympics to complete a football Olympics medals set – Gold in 1996, silver in 2008 and bronze in 2016. The bronze was the only medal Team Nigeria returned with from the South American nation.