Thursday, July 16, 2009

Enyimba To Renew Eguavoen’s Contract

Following the triumph of Enyimba in last Sunday’s final of the Federation Cup, head coach of the club, Austin Eguavoen and his assistants are up for new one-year contracts with the Aba-based outfit.
In a telephone interview with our correspondent, chairman of the five-time Nigeria Premier League (NPL) winner, Felix Anyansi-Agwu, disclosed that the performance of the club in the past season would be reviewed by the management of the club.
He added that the contracts of Eguavoen and his assistants, Ike Shorunmu and Ifeanyi Onyedika, would also feature prominently when the management team of the club meets soon.
“We will look at the performance of our team last season by reviewing it. Also, the contracts of the coaches would be looked into before the start of next season,” he informed.
When our correspondent tried to put him on the spot over the contracts of Eguavoen and Shorunmu, whose stay at the club expired last Sunday after the Federation Cup final in Lagos, Anyansi-Agwu decided to thread softly but gave the hint that the two coaches may have earned their stay after all.
“Seriously speaking you cannot just say that they will be with us next season,” began Anyansi-Agwu on the contracts of the ex-internationals. “But in all fairness they have done well by winning a continental ticket and the FA (Federation) Cup. I am confident that they will want to stay with us next season but we will still need to hold talks with them before the start of next season because we intend to keep our best staff so that we can challenge for the title next season,” he said.
The duo of Eguavoen and Shorunmu were appointed by Enyimba on July 11, 2008 to assist Belgian coach, Maurice Cooreman.
Eguavoen and Shorunmu came in to replace Daniel Amokachi and Alloy Agu, who were given roles with the Super Eagles as assistant coach and goalkeepers' coach respectively.
Later in 2008, Eguavoen was elevated to the position of head coach after Cooreman’s contract expired and Enyimba refused to renew it paving way for the 66-year-old Belgian to move to Ghana’s Ashante Kotoko.
Anyansi-Agwu described the last two years before Sunday’s triumph in the Federation Cup as trying for the club players, officials and supporters since the side could not win a trophy and failed to reach any of the continental club championship.
“The last two years, which is 2007 and 2008 were not the best for us in terms of results and achievements I must say. When you compare the previous years when we won the Premier League three times back-to-back, you will realise that the last two years were poor in our own estimation,” he said.
Asked if the poor performances of Enyimba in the last two years affected the finances of Enyimba especially in its failure to reach this year’s edition of the CAF Champions League, Anyansi-Agwu explained that it did not totally wreak the books of the club.
He added that the club only missed out of generating revenues from taking part in the CAF Champions League, but pointed out that the sale of a few players made up for that aspect of the club’s deficiency.

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