ABUJA, October 8 – Nigeria’s most capped international Vincent Enyeama has quit international football after a meeting with top officials of the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) in Belgium on Thursday.
Enyeama’s decision did not come as a surprise after a major falling out with Super Eagles coach Sunday Oliseh on Tuesday night following the announcement of CSKA Moscow forward Ahmed Musa as the country’s new captain.
Earlier, on Thursday the 33-year-old Lille goalkeeper, who has been Nigeria skipper since Joseph Yobo quit international football last year, vowed “not to walk out on Nigeria”.
But later Thursday, Enyeama announced via Instagram he has quit the country’s team.
“I have fought a good fight for more than 13 years. I have finished my course, I have kept the faith and sang the anthem with passion,” he wrote.
“Henceforth, there is laid for me a crown which only God can reward me for my 13 years of national service.
“God bless NIGERIA. From HENCEFORTH, I am no more the captain of the NIGERIAN senior football team, I am no more the goalie of the team, I am out of the team.
“I am no more available for international duties.
“I want to say thank you to every Nigerian fan and supporter worldwide. It’s being the most trying period of my life but I know that Nigerians are there for me and God is with me. God bless NIGERIA.”
In June against Chad, Enyeama won a record-breaking 101 caps to beat a century of appearances compiled by Joseph Yobo last year.
Incidentally, it was from this AFCON qualifier in Kaduna that would lead to his retirement from international football.
Enyeama had expressed fears over the safety of Kaduna city to stage this match at a time the activities of the Islamist Boko Haram sect was becoming a lot more daring and deadly in the northern part of the country where Kaduna is situated and which has also been hit by the militants.
He was subsequently queried and at the height of insurbordination he tore apart the query right in front of the NFF general secretary.
He was then invited by the NFF disciplinary committee to state his own defence and he failed to turn up, arguing that he did not get the invitation in time.
The bad blood between the NFF and Enyeama degenerated with the NFF opting for an internal resolution of this gross misconduct.
It was agreed then that Enyeama be stripped of the captaincy and possibly banned from the national team.
The goalkeeper featured in three World Cups and won the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations with Nigeria.