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FIFA Presidency: My Loss Was Political – Odegbami

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Former Super Eagles skipper, Patrick Segun Odegbami, who failed in his bid to stand in next year’s FIFA presidential election, has revealed the reason behind his failure.

The 63 year old, also known as ‘Mr. Mathematical’ blamed rival Orji Uzor Kalu and and former FIFA executive committee member, Amos Adamu, for his inability to get the backing of the Confederation of African Football (CAF).

Speaking to news men, the furious Odegbami said: “Where were Amos Adamu and (Orji) Kalu yesterday? It’s a Nigerian thing to bring down others.

The 1980 Africa Cup of Nations winner also blamed the Nigeria’s Football Federation (NFF) for offering him their support too late to meet Monday’s deadline.

Speaking to BBC, the Former Eagles striker said: “The NFF only sent their nomination letter to Fifa (on Monday afternoon). What was I supposed to do with that?

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“That was their reaction to my letter sent to them two months ago. It is preposterous.

“The local politics within Nigerian football created a delay in nominating me. By the time the NFF did it was too late in the day for me to secure the necessary endorsements from five different countries. I had only a few hours to do so.”

Odegbami also believes that the long-standing difference between him and current CAF president Issa Hayatou, may have worked against him.

“Of course there are local politics within the Nigerian and African football system that pitches some of us against the established system.

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“I have been one of the most virulent critics of the perpetuity of Issa Hayatou in office and I knew I was not one of his best friends,” he said.

Ahead of Monday’s deadline two Africans were nominated by CAF, South Africa’s Tokyo Sexwale and Liberia’s Musa Bility.

They will be joined in the race by five others, Sheikh Salman bin Ebrahim al-Khalifa, Gianni Infantino, Prince Ali bin Hussein, Michell Platini and Jerome Champagne.

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