It took the Minister of Youth and Sports, Solomon Dalung to restore peace in the national U-23 football team camp in Atlanta, USA yesterday following a heart to heart talk with the captain of Team Nigeria, John Mikel Obi.
The Dream Team VI camp in Atlanta, was reportedly in disarray following poor camp and welfare conditions which even affected the training program of the team ahead of the opening of the football event in Rio.
The Minister who is in the United States of America to visit the football and basketball teams ahead of the games said he had been properly briefed about the state of affairs in the players’ camp by the captain of the team John Mikel Obi and the Consulate in Atlanta.
He said arrangements have been concluded to airlift the team to Manaus, Brazil venue of their first game in a chartered plane today. (Tuesday Aug 2, 2016) Barrister Dalung said clearance has also been obtained from the International Olympic Committee IOC in Rio to facilitate smooth flight operations.
The Minister however frowned at the camp conditions and welfare of the players as he restated that the Ministry was not carried along in line with approved training and camping programs for the games.
“There is no doubt that the ministry was not considered while plans were being made for the Olympic football team. Nevertheless, we shall intervene to remedy the situation. I have appealed to the captain to assume control of the team and restore sanity. For officials who decided to violate the code of their profession and take to media rampage to secure cheap blackmail, their conduct will definitely be measured with existing rules. We have decided to restore sanity and discipline in Team Nigeria. We shall stop at nothing to sanction any conduct that is not within the code of Rio operations. All federations are hereby directed to stick to the rules” Dalung said.
The U-23 team will play Japan on Aug 4, 2016. They are in Group B also with Columbia and Sweden.
Barrister Dalung had earlier arrived in the Hotel ICON Houston camp of the men’s national basketball team to cheer the D’Tigers in their last friendly match against the star studded USA team. D’Tigers leave on August 3, 2016 for Rio.

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