Nigeria have named Samson Siasia as their new manager subject to a contract being formalised.
The 43-year-old former Super Eagles striker was chosen ahead of Stephen Keshi by the Nigeria Football Federation’s technical committee.
Siasia, who has worked with Nigeria’s under-20 and Olympic teams, is to succeed interim coach Austin Eguavoen. He is due to start on 1 December with qualification for the 2012 Africa Cup of Nations his goal.
Last week, the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) issued a communiqué explaining why they chose Siasia over the former Mali coach. “After careful deliberation, the NFF has accepted the recommendation of the technical committee that Samson Siasia be appointed as head coach of the Super Eagles,” the communiqué read.
The appointment of Siasia brings to an end a long wait for the 43-year-old to becoming manager of Nigeria’s Super Eagles.
Nigeria have been searching for a permanent coach since Swede Lars Lagerback left after the 2010 World Cup finals in South Africa, where Nigeria failed to make it out of the group stages.
Siasia had already been in talks with the NFF over succeeding Lagerback before the body chose to advertise the position last month, which saw Keshi emerge in a two-horse race.
Having won the 2005 African Youth Championship, Siasia – a former Lokeren and Nantes striker – took his team to the Fifa Under-20 World Cup final in 2005 where they were undone by Argentina.
A former assistant coach for the senior team, Siasia also took Nigeria to the 2008 Olympic Games final where Argentina (and Messi) once again proved too strong. Keshi had said before the interview that he would remain good friends with Siasia no matter what decision the NFF ultimately took.