NFF to investigate Keshi's Ivory Coast application

By Oluwashina OkelejiBBC Sport, Nigeria
Nigeria coach Stephen Keshi
Nigeria coach Stephen Keshi

The Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) confirmed it will investigate reports that national team coach Stephen Keshi applied to manage Ivory Coast.

On Friday, the Ivorian Football Federation (FIF) announced it had received 59 applications in the race to succeed Herve Renard.

The list will be then be narrowed down to three who will be interviewed.

The FIF initially published the name of every man to declare interest in the job, including Stephen Keshi.

He is still employed by Nigeria having signed a new deal in April.

The page on FIF website listing Keshi and 58 other applicants for the Elephants job has been taken down but the NFF insists that will not prevent 'a full investigation'.

"The NFF will open a full investigation to determine whether Mr Stephen Keshi actually applied for the vacant Ivory Coast job," NFF spokesman Ademola Olajire told BBC Sport.

"There will be no hasty decision. We hope to get a full part from the Ivory Coast football federation before making an official statement."

Keshi returned as Nigeria coach for the third time in April by signing a two-year contract with the NFF.

In his first spell he won the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations but the deal was not renewed after the 2014 World Cup.

He later returned on a match-by-match deal, which ended in November 2014 after failure to reach the 2015 Nations Cup.

As caretaker coach, Keshi endured a turbulent 2014, in which he was sacked by the NFF and only reinstalled after intervention from then Nigeria President Goodluck Jonathan.

Keshi, who also won the Nations Cup as a player with Nigeria in 1994, declined to comment on his decision to apply to manage the African champions.

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