While talks are currently being held with NFF in a bid to get Vincent Enyeama to rejoin the team, the Super Eagles coach Sunday Oliseh has opened up about the rift in detail in this interview.
Its puzzling really because it because to say the least I am very hurt, I am very disappointed at the character assassination that Vincent has taken on my personality as regards this issue. If you want to retire, retire. You don’t have to drag and lie and insult somebody who did nothing. I will take you down to when this thing. We called everybody to camp We invited 24 players and most of the players, in fact even Mikel came in on Sunday Night. He was supposed to be here on Monday which was very good. and most of the players came in on Monday but I knew Vincent had gone for the burial ceremony of his mum, that he might come in late.
He came into camp on Tuesday afternoon by 5.20 or 5.30, just as the training was almost over he drove in from the airport and there are even pictures that we snapped of me hugging him because I was happy to see him back in camp. But when we trained that Tuesday afternoon, I wasn’t happy with the physical involvement and input of my players so we had dinner and I spoke to the players and made it clear to them that I wasn’t happy and that I needed an improvement for us to play more as a team and that we deserved better and I could see the body language of the players that they were very receptive and were conscious of what it was. Only for me at the end of my speech for me to go to my seat to sit down, was for Vincent to stand up to say he wanted to say something and I told him, look this is not the time to say anything because we just had a discussion about how to improve, we will discuss personal issues after. He said no he wanted to say something and I refused and said No i don’t want you to say anything. Please sit down, later you can come to me, we could sought whatever it is out. He said No and he was adamant he wanted to say something. So I told him with all dues respect, this is the Super Eagles and I am the coach. We are not going to have two coaches. I decide who talks and when to talk at a meeting and at the moment I am telling you no. If you refuse to do what I am saying then it is better you go out. He was still adamant and trying to raise his voice and then I said it is either you go out or we leave the room for you or I will get you to be taken out because you are stopping the team from even having dinner and eventually his team mates got up and took him out and said hey come off it Vincent. At one point I told him, its either you stop this now or you can go back home and when he continued I gave him a handshake and told him Now you can go home. I have released you. You just came in, you have not even trained and you are already looking for an argument or problem and so I told him go home. because he had not even had any training session. So I went to my room and 5 of his colleagues Mikel, Emenike, Musa Onazi and Echejile, came to me and said coach we have spoken to him and he is aware. We know him sometimes he talks before he thinking. I said okay he can stay, we are trying to build a team, you can sty. The next morning he came, everything was settled, we ate breakfast. As we were about to go for training, I received a message from back home where Vincent had insinuated publicly that I had insulted the memory of his mother when I spoke to the team and this was really hurtful and a blatant lie and I find it quite, with all due respect, insane because you can’t make an accusation, a false accusation when there are so many witnesses as much as 19 players, 3 other officials and there was no reason to talk about your mum because you were just coming into camp. There was nothing to talk about you. So to now try to make a character assassination and try to like make the people sympathize with the fact that he was mistreated against his mum. He was the captain of this team. When we played in Tanzania, I called the team administrator, Dayo, and we had arranged for the team to wear a black band and to have one minute of silence before we play in Tanzania in honor of Vincent’s dead mum. The only reason why that was not done was because Dayo came back and said they refused us because we had to have a request for it. CAF made out and the time was too short. So how would a man that is sensitive enough to try to honor Vincent Enyeama’s mum now try to insult his mum
Listen, before I was appointed coach of Super Eagles, Vincent Enyeama had a big rift with the NFF concerning the statements he made concerning the pitch in Kaduna. I was not yet a coach. I was in Nigeria and I stood up for Vincent because I felt that he shouldn’t be castigated for representing his team mates.
When I was appointed as Chief coach of Super Eagles, the first thing I did was to pick up my car very early in the morning, drove and spent a whole day watching Vincent train, took him to lunch which I paid for. I had lunch with him to intimate him with my plans to build the team with him as captain of the team. When I spoke to him, I spoke to him about the tactical things we wanted to change the policy changes we wanted to make like you do with a captain. When I spoke to him then, he made one statement. He was talking about retiring in a year or two years time and I told him, Vincent, I am trying to build a team till 2018. I don’t need a captain who is thinking of retiring or who is planning for after football while we were preparing and nobody does that in football. You wait till your last game or your last match then you announce retirement. Let this be out of the agenda.
Two weeks ago to this time, Vincent called me to discuss about the funeral arrangements for the Mum and I told him its saddening what has happened to you but I can’t be available because of some other reasons but I have spoken to the NFF president and he was going with a delegation. He said he will be there so we will be represented and while we were having this discussion he was talking again about retirement. That was when I decided to pick Ahmed Musa as captain because I felt then that he is probably not into it anymore. Personally I don’t know Vincent so to carry a grudge against a person that I don’t know is…