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Nigeria name Finidi George as manager

NIGERIA have appointed their former winger Finidi George as head coach, officials said, elevating the 53-year-old from his previous role as assistant.

George worked under former coach Jose Peseiro and took over after the latter’s contract was not renewed despite leading Nigeria to the final of this year’s Africa Cup of Nations in the Ivory Coast where they lost to the hosts.

George was interim coach for two friendlies in March, a 2-1 victory over Ghana and a 2-0 defeat by Mali, and now has the job on a permanent basis.

His immediate task will be to get Nigeria’s 2026 World Cup qualification campaign back on track after a surprise 1-1 draw with tiny Lesotho at home and Zimbabwe in neutral Rwanda.

They next face South Africa in Uyo and Benin in neutral Ivory Coast in early June.

George, who lifted the 1995 Champions League with Ajax Amsterdam, was part of Nigeria’s Golden Generation that claimed the 1994 Africa Cup of Nations title and competed at the 1994 and 1998 World Cups. He won 62 caps, scoring six goals.

By The African Mirror