NIGERIAN billionaires Alhaji Aliko Dangote and Chief Femi Otedola have promised to pay $50,000 and $25,000 per goal respectively to the Super Eagles when they face Algeria in Sunday’s African Cup of Nations semi final.
Yesterday, Algeria qualified for the semi finals after beating Ivory Coast 4-3 on penalties, having played 1 -1 draw with them after extra time. With Nigeria having eliminated South Africa on Wednesday, the Eagles are now poised to take on the Desert Foxes over the weekend, with the winner facing the victor in the other semi final between Tunisia and Senegal.
While Alhaji Dangote has made a pledge of $50,000 to the team for every goal in their remaining two matches at the championship, Chief Otedola pledged the sum of $25,000 for every goal. Nigeria are now expected to beat Algeria and proceed into the final, taking place on Friday July 19.
Following the Eagles Round of 16 victory over cup holders Cameroon in Alexandria, businessman Hosea Okunbo pledged the sum of $20,000 to every player, while Lagos State governor Babajide Sanwoolu came good with $5,000 per player. Also, the Nigerian Football Federation’s sponsor Aiteo also paid the team $75,000, being $25,000 for each of the three goals scored against the Indomitable Lions.
An NFF spokesman said: “While Dangote made a pledge of $50,000 to the team for every goal in their remaining two matches at the championship, Otedola pledged the sum of $25,000 for every goal. That means the players will share $75,000 for each goal they score in their two remaining games.”
Eagles manager Gernot Rohr, said: “The next match in a championship is always the toughest, so it is always important to approach it that way. That is why we must now forget what we achieved against South Africa in our quarter final match and start to build up towards the semi final.
“There is no time to rest on our oars. We must make all the sacrifices we can now to achieve our objectives at this tournament. We must stay focused and be fully committed.”