Super Eagles midfielder John Ogu, has apologised for calling on his national teammates to boycott next month’s 2021 Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers against Sierra Leone in protest against the government’s attitude towards its citizens.
In a tweet on Wednesday, the footballer said he spoke out of anger and pain for #EndSARS protesters shot by soldiers at the Lekki toll gate plaza last Tuesday.
The PUNCH reports that Ogu had on Friday asked his teammates to boycott the game billed to hold November 9 in Nigeria with the reverse fixture in Freetown a week later, as a form of support for the #EndSARS movement.
While apologising, Ogu said, “I want to sincerely apologise to Nigerians, the Nigerian Football Federation and the players of the Super Eagles, both past and present and even those dreaming to wear the green and white jersey that I wore with great pride and honour.
“My comments about the Super Eagles boycotting the AFCON qualifiers, was said in the heat of the moment from a place of pain, frustration and anger for the shooting of harmless, flag-carrying and national anthem-singing Nigerians, at the Lekki toll gate. A national anthem and green and white flag that I have sand and carried all my life with joy and pride.
“I admit that I crossed the lines, by asking players to boycott the AFCON qualifiers. I have honoured all national team invitations with great joy and delight with a deep desire to be part of a team that hive joy to Nigerians and make them happy, football is the strongest unifying force in Nigeria.
“I wish that, my comments that were spoken out of anger and pain would not cause more division in our football and even at a time such as this that the nation needs to pull together.”
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