The Super Eagles were eliminated from the World Cup after a 2-1 loss to a Lionel Messi inspired Argentina side in their final group game.
Football loving Nigerians have been heartbroken following the exit and the NFF President has issued an apology as well as emphasising the importance of beginning preparations for the next edition in Qatar.
Super Eagles preparing for 2022 FIFA World Cup
In a statement on the Federations website, Pinnick issued the apology and reiterated that the Super Eagles will come back stronger for the 2022 FIFA World Cup.
He said, “We apologize to His Excellency, President Muhammadu Buhari and all Nigerians from far and near, those who came to Russia to support the team and those who watched on television. Our expectation was for a place in the knockout rounds but that didn’t happen.
“We will go home and prepare harder for the next finals. In truth, ours is a young and vibrant team capable of learning and getting better, and these attributes hold that the future is bright.”
Preparations for Super Falcons and Falconets
Pinnick also reassured Nigerians that preparations will swiftly begin for Falconets, the Super Falcons who will take part in the 2018 African Women Cup of Nations (AWCON) and also the 2019 African Cup of Nations (AFCON) for the Super Eagles.
He said, “For the moment, we have to start preparations for the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations, which is only 12 months away, as well as intensify the preparation of the Falconets (U20 Women Team) and the Super Falcons (Senior Women Team) for major championships coming up soon.”
“We have a population that is truly passionate about the game. It is that wonderful equity that we are happy to engage and build on for the good of the Nigeria game. Development of the game at the grassroots will proceed apace and our focus on the Future Eagles (U13/U15) competition will become even more painstaking.”
Pinnick praised the Super Eagles players and technical crew and stated that they wanted to stay longer in Russia and that they are disappointed not to.
“Different people would naturally hold a different opinion. But I think the technical crew, just like the players, gave their all. They wanted to stay much longer at the FIFA World Cup but it just did not happen.”
The Falconets will travel to France from to take part in the U20 Women’s World Cup which is scheduled to hold from Tuesday, August 7 to Sunday, August 26 while the Super Falcons travel to Ghana for the AWCON scheduled for November 2018.