President General of the Nigerian Football and Other Sports Supporters Club, Dr. Rafiu Ladipo has slammed the decision of the Egyptian embassy to deny a host of Nigeria fans hoping to travel to Egypt to cheer on the Super Eagles in their ‘must-win’ clash against the Pharaohs of Egypt
It was gathered that the Egyptian embassy in Abuja expressly denied members of the Nigerian Supporters Club and some other individuals entry visas for the crucial game fixed for Tuesday in Alexandria, Egypt and Dr. Ladipo described the development as embarrassing and not good for the growth of football.
“This decision by the Egyptian embassy is embarrassing and can’t help football to grow. It was a deliberate act to deny us the visas because we’ve submitted our passports over a week ago to their home office, they told us that they were going to confirm from their main office in Egypt. But as I am speaking to you now they didn’’t give us the visas; and they are equally withholding our passports,” Ladipo told SRSport.com from Abuja on Monday.
He continued: “I raised this alarm last Thursday that the embassy are trying to play pranks, now they have done the worse. When my secretary and some other members visited their office there was nobody to attend to them, except the securities at the gate, the chartered aircraft is about leaving for Egypt now; and which means no member of the supporters will travel to Egypt. And the most annoying thing now is that they refused to release our passports.
“They have succeeded in denying us the chance to give the Super Eagles moral support for the second leg game in Egypt. Let their conscience judge them with what they have done, we are not known for violence; when they came here we gave them the necessary support; we didn’t lose our heads even they scored the late equalizer in Kaduna. But when it comes to their turn, they started acting drama.
“This is not in the spirit of sportsmanship; I am even disappointed that this kind of attitude is coming from a civilized country like Egypt. In the game of football you can’t win all your matches all the time. There are three probable results; it is either you win, lose or draw. What they have done today is something terrible; and I think the Federal Government should make case out of this.
“As the president of supporters club in Africa, we are going to lodge a proper complain to CAF and FIFA on this matter, but again, one thing I can assure you is that they would be beaten at home come Tuesday Insha Allah.”
The Super Eagles need all the support they can get in Tuesday’s clash as only a win will keep them in contention for one of the places at next year’s Africa Cup of Nations to be staged in Gabon.