Alhaji Aminu Kurfi Balele, chairman of the Katsina State Football Association and a member of the NFF Task Force on Cadet National Teams, declared he lavished a whopping 30,000 US Dollars on the National U-23 male team, the Olympic Eagles, to encourage them to qualify for the 2024 Olympic Games in France.
It would be recalled that the business tycoon redeemed his $10,000 commitment to the Olympic Eagles for the 1-1 draw in the first leg in Dar es Salaam just before the return leg of the 2023 AFCON U-23 qualifiers on Saturday in Ibadan.
And right after the 2-0 triumph over Junior Taifas in the second leg, Balele again fulfilled a promise he had made to the Olympic Eagles to motivate them of $20,000.
According to the official currency rate, the All Progressives Congress (APC) chieftain in Katsina State has given the Olympic Eagles about N13 million, but if the rate in the black market is used, the amount would be over N24 million.
According to Daily Trust, Balele, who is running for the House of Representatives on behalf of the APC in the 2023 election for the Dutsinma/Kurfi Federal Constituency, claimed that as a major football stakeholder, he was paid that Nigeria did not advance to the most recent Olympic Games in Tokyo and that he is prepared to inspire the current team to advance to the following Olympics in France.
“I am happy that I joined other well-meaning Nigerians like the Governor of Oyo State Makinde to motivate the U-23 national team to qualify for the next round of the 2023 AFCON qualifiers.
“It is not only about the money that I gave to the Olympic Eagles. What is more important is that as Nigerians, we must be patriotic enough to support the team to qualify for France 2024 Olympics,” said Balele