Nigeria’s Dream team (Under 23 team) for the Rio Olympics are reportedly stranded at their training camp in Atlanta, United States of America.
They have for the third time failed to depart for Brazil due to ticket delay. According to the Minister of Sports, Solomon Dalung, arrangements had been concluded to airlift the team to Manaus, Brazil in a chartered plane.
But according to sources, a “logistical mix-up” resulted in the sports ministry failure to pay for the team’s chartered flight from Atlanta to Rio and the flight will not take off until the matter is resolved.
A close to the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) told the BBC that: “The money paid by the ministry for the charter flight did not hit airline’s account on Tuesday so they refused to fly the team to Brazil.”
The dream team and their officials have been left dazed and frustrated at Atlanta. This simlpy means the team will have less than 48 hours to prepare for their first match against Japan on Friday.
Meanwhile, Team Nigeria have arrived in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, for the 2016 Games. The major batch of the athletes arrived in the Brazilian city at midday on Tuesday as confirmed by the President of the Nigeria Wrestling Federation, Daniel Igali.
The Mayor of Rio De Janeiro, Eduardo da Costa Paes alongside other officials will welcome Team Nigeria to the Games Village of the Summer Rio Olympics on Wednesday, August 3, by 10 am (Brazilian time).
Team Welcome Ceremonies are a key occasion for athletes, team officials and their guests, as it acknowledges their journey to the Games and marks the start of their residency in the Village.
Each team from the 206 countries will be welcomed to the Village in a special ceremony led by the Village Chieftains as well as athletes and officials of the countries.
Nigeria is participating in eight events at the Olympics.