Abuja, NIGERIA — Nigeria’s President Bola Tinubu has bestowed the prestigious national honor of Member of the Order of the Niger (MON) upon every member of the Super Eagles who participated in the recently concluded African Cup of Nations (AFCON).
In a special ceremony held at the Council Chambers of the State House, President Tinubu extended this honor to the national football team of Nigeria, the Super Eagles.
This event, Tuesday, February 13, 2024, comes in the aftermath of their spirited performance in the 2024 Africa Cup of Nations finals against the host nation, Côte d’Ivoire, where they narrowly missed clinching the coveted trophy.
In addition to the national honor conferred by President Tinubu, the federal government has further demonstrated its appreciation for the Super Eagles’ achievement.
Mr. Nyesom Wike, the Minister of the Federal Capital Territory, announced that each member of the team will receive a plot of land and a flat in a yet-to-be-disclosed location.
This gesture underscores the government’s recognition of the Super Eagles’ dedication, hard work, and resilience throughout their AFCON campaign.
As the nation celebrates their efforts, these honors and rewards serve as a token of appreciation for their contributions to Nigerian football and their representation on the international stage.
Further details regarding the allocation of land and flats to the Super Eagles team members will be provided in due course.
NFF President Ibrahim Gusau, who was quite elated by the award, said, “This is a great day for all of us; you can see how the President received the team, and we are highly elated to say that we have been honored with MON, to all our entire team, including myself and my general secretary.
“That is a great thing that has happened to this country. That shows that Nigerians are really happy, especially the president. We thank God for the support given to this team, and by the grace of God, we will continue to do our best to ensure that we make Nigerians happy through football.”
The Super Eagles lost 1-2 to the Elephants of Cote d’Ivoire on Sunday in Abidjan, after they had gone through to the final unbeaten.
The coach, Jose Peseiro, revealed it was the first time he had met a country’s president in the course of his managerial career.
“I [would] like to say thank you to the President. I am 60 years old, and this is the first time some president has invited me to his house,” the Portuguese coach said.
Peseiro, however, said it would have been better if his team had lifted the trophy. “Of course, I would have liked to bring the cup to the Nigerian people. I’m sad about that. But of course, I’m happy because I think we did a fantastic job. In the final, I think we felt that atmosphere.”
With the 2026 World Cup qualifiers continuing in June, Victor Osimhen, who spearheaded the team’s attack, spoke about the unfortunate cyberbullying of Alex Iwobi, which the captain, Ahmed Musa, addressed on Monday.
“I urge Nigerians that cyberbullying is bad because we are also humans. Sometimes we make mistakes. Sometimes we have a good game, and we’ll get the hype. But of course, when you criticise, you have to be constructive when doing this type of thing.
“I think, to be fair, what they have done to Alex [Iwobi] is out of this world and not good. They should also look at his mental health because there are some of us that can take this to heart and then keep on grinding. And there are some of us that it gets to our heads, and they will lose focus, and we will lose form. So I think we are rallying around him. We have spoken to him individually and collectively.”
“And now we have to go back to our clubs to keep up the good work, and hopefully we get called up by our national team and give our all also. But of course, the goal is to get the ticket to the World Cup, and I think we have the team and the squad to achieve this.”