Nigeria stage sit-in at WWC over unpaid bonuses

Nigeria players are staging a sit-in protest, refusing to leave their hotel in France until all of their outstanding bonuses are paid, following the team’s elimination from the Women’s World Cup on Saturday.

Players told ESPN they are owed bonuses from two games, against Gambia and Senegal, from as far back as two years ago, amounting to 2 million Nigerian naira (about $5,600 U.S.), but they have been paid only half of that. They also say they are owed five days of daily allowance while at the World Cup.

“They paid us 1 million [naira] and said that is all. We want them to pay the balance,” one player told ESPN. “Part of that money is from two years ago, the other is from three years ago. And they are also owing us five days’ daily allowance here in France.

“Before the World Cup, we asked them for a meeting so that we could discuss our World Cup bonuses, like they did with the men’s team last year. They ignored the letter and nobody said anything about it until now.”

The players are also demanding their share of the World Cup participation fee from FIFA, even though the tournament’s organisers are not scheduled to pay those until September.

Nigeria Football Federation president Amaju Pinnick told ESPN that all the outstanding allowances have been paid.

“We have paid them everything they are being owed,” he said.

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