Bonuses: Falcons lament slavery treatment, NFF insists money paid


By: Ebenezer Bajela.

Forty-three days after the conclusion of the 2023 Women’s World Cup in Australia and New Zealand, the Nigeria Football Federation and the Super Falcons seem headed for another showdown after the players stated that they were treated like “slaves” following their unpaid bonuses and allowances over the years.

Just before the start of the FIFA Women’s World Cup, The PUNCH exclusively reported that the Nigerian ladies threatened to boycott their opening game.

They eventually sealed an agreement with the NFF that they would receive a $100 daily camp allowance, a $3,000 win bonus and $1,500 bonus for a draw.

FIFA later announced that each player at the tournament would receive a minimum of $30,000.

According to The Athletic, the players claimed they had received less than half of their daily camp wages and no match bonuses from the NFF.

“They don’t treat us as if we are here to play for our country — they treat us as if we are slaves,” one of the players said.

“We disagreed, we told them ‘no.’ You can’t come and tell us you’re not paying us our match bonuses… How can you tell me FIFA included your match bonus (in its money)? They take us as if we are fools, as if we don’t know anything, as if we don’t know our rights,” another player stated.

One player, according to the UK tabloid, stated that their commitment was to the country and not to the federation.

“We’re not playing for the federation; we’re playing for ourselves, playing for our country, playing for our families.

“We love football, we have a passion for it… and that passion is what gives us that drive.”

Reacting, NFF Head of Communications, Ademola Olajire, said FIFA was yet to pay the promised World Cup money to the federation but insisted that all daily allowances for the World Cup had been paid.

He added that bonuses owed the players before the World Cup had been paid.

“Their daily allowances for the World Cup have been paid. All they’ve been owed previously have been paid, bar one qualifying match.

“They will get their World Cup player allocation money when FIFA sends the monies,” Olajire told The PUNCH.

However, a member of the squad, who missed the World Cup but was part of the Falcons side at last year’s friendly tournament in the US, told The PUNCH that she was yet to receive the $1,000 due her.

“NFF has not paid me my money. How can they say they’ve paid us all the monies we are owed when I haven’t gotten mine? If they’ve paid others, then they should pay my $1,000 too,” the Europe-based player  said.