Nigeria have ended their sit-in protest over unpaid bonuses and allowances and left their hotel in France following elimination from the FIFA Women’s World Cup and are back home now after a long flight from France.
As reported by ESPN FC, the players demanded payment of outstanding allowances from the Nigerian Football Federation (NFF).
They alleged they were owed bonuses from two games, against Gambia and Senegal, from as far back as two years ago, amounting to NGN 2 million (£4,400/$5,600/€4,900), but that they have been paid only half of that
After hours of deliberation, the NFF has promised to pay the outstanding fees.
The team have now left their hotel and are expected to arrive in Abuja today.
NFF President Amaju Pinnick told ESPN FC the issue came down to a misunderstanding, adding: “As far as we are concerned that is a non-issue as the bonuses they are asking for have been paid.
“The problem is that the players wanted to be paid the bonuses for home matches in US dollars, but that is no longer the rule under this Government.
“All transactions for home games must be paid in [Nigerian] Naira.”
As a result of the meetings, three players missed their flights home, which will now be rescheduled.
The NFF were advised by FIFA that any further expenses incurred by the team’s continued stay would be deducted from their participation fee for playing in the tournament.
The participation fee is also part of the outstanding money, but that will only be distributed to players after the Women’s World Cup finishes because FIFA is not scheduled to pay it until September.
Nigeria were beaten 3-0 by Germany in the round of 16 on Saturday (June 22).
Goals from Alexandra Popp, Sara Däbritz and Lea Schüller put the West African nation to the sword at Stade des Alpes in Grenoble.
Nigeria have protested over unpaid bonuses on other occasions, including after winning the Africa Cup of Nations in 2016, when the squad staged a public demonstration in Abuja.