I Want To Avoid Creating Problems For Any Player — Keshi
Following the row going on between Nigeria and the club managers of Millwall and Newcastle; Kenny Jackett and Alan Pardew over Nigerian defender and Millwall’s Danny Shittu and Newcastle player Shola Ameobi, Super Eagle head coach; Stephen Keshi said he will be willing to let the players be, if the row will affect their careers as he is not out to let them lose favour in their various clubs.
‚ÄúI would not want to cause any problems for any player over something like this because it is his career and eventually he will have to return to his club,‚ÄĚ he said.
This is coming after Nigeria hit out at Newcastle United for not allowing Shola Ameobi to play at next month‚Äôs African Nations Cup in South Africa.
Nigeria has been drawn in Nations Cup Group C with Burkina Faso, Ethiopia and defending champions Zambia.
Pardew responded to the naming of the Nigerian player saying Ameobi cannot go to South Africa and the national team manager;Keshi knows the reason why which he is not revealing.
‚ÄúThe national team manager knows the reasons ‚Äď which I am keeping to myself.‚ÄĚ
The African tournament which will be holding from Jan. 19th- Feb 10th named Newcastle Ameobi in the provisional list but Alan Pardew whom Keshi claimed he has never met in his life has refused to let the player report to the Super Eagles training camp in Portugal.
‚ÄúI don‚Äôt know what is in his head or what he is thinking about. I have never spoken to Alan Pardew in my life; I have only seen him on television.‚ÄĚ
Keshi said during an interview on the Supersports channel that Pardew cannot stop Ameobi from reporting for National duties because the Afcon is a competition backed by FIFA; the World football governing body.
‚ÄúAlan Pardew knows he cannot stop Shola from going to the Nations Cup because the competition is sanctioned by soccer‚Äôs ruling body.‚ÄĚ
Pardew’s Newcastle is not sitting comfortably right now on the English Premier League table as the club is just five points above the relegation zone in 15th spot, hence the reason the manager is not letting Ameobi answer to national call.
Keshi also reacted to Kenny Jackett’s refusal to release Danny Shittu who was also named in the Eagles provisional list as the Millwall manager said Shittu would not be going to the Nations Cup.
Keshi said the English clubs feel they have every right on these players so they feel they can stop them from playing for their countries. He said they really have to understand the importance of the Afcon tournament.
‚ÄúI don‚Äôt know why the English clubs are trying to stop their players from going. Do they feel these players don‚Äôt have the right to play for their countries?‚ÄĚ
‚ÄúClubs have to understand how important this competition is.‚ÄĚ