African Cup of Nations, AFCON hero Sunday Mba on Sunday revealed that he was a Rangers player having moved from Warri Wolves to the Enugu side at the end of last season.
The player who became a subject of argument between two Nigerian Premier League sides, Warri Wolves and Rangers made this disclosure after Rangers released a statement to debunk Warri Wolves’ claim of ownership of the player.
Warri Wolves have repeatedly said that the attacking midfielder was still their player as transfer formalities had not been done. The Nigeria Premier League Interim Management Committee had also looked into the player’s contract and ruled him a Warri Wolves player.
In fairness to Warri Wolves, before Sunday Mba’s AFCON heroics, he was widely referred to as a Warri Wolves player and Rangers never came out at the time to say the player had been sold to the club. Sources also say there were negotiations before the AFCON tourney, but nothing was finalised at the time, adding that Mba’s apparent market value increase is the reason why Warri Wolves halted the negotiation which might have been in an advanced stage, but still not finalised.
Mba however made the following comment yesterday: “We were four players that left Warri Wolves before the Nations Cup. Why is it that I am the only one they are bothering. The truth of the matter is that I have no contract with Wolves.”
Wolves so sure that no transfer formalities had taken place yesterday directed Mba to return to the club for training on or before Friday, March 1.
“We don’t want to be exchanging words or be arguing about Sunday Mba. If he were a bonafide player of Rangers let them field him in a match and see if they would not be sanctioned,” Amaju Pinnick, the Executive Chairman of Delta State Sports Commission said, adding that “the Interim Management Committee ruled on February 13 that he was a Warri Wolves player as Rangers were yet to buy him and we want to leave it at that.”
An angry Etu Moses, Warri Wolves spokesman asked fuming; “why did he present himself as Warri Wolves player and collected additional N2.5m when the governor of Delta State rewarded Super Eagles players on February 14 with N2.5m each? His became N5m because the governor doubled the reward for all the Warri Wolves players. He has one year remaining in his contract,” Moses said, adding that the club expected Mba to resume in Warri on or before March 1, 2013.
Reacting to the issue, Rangers’ spokesman Foster Chime said “this matter is between the Delta Football Association and the Enugu State Football Association.
“At the 2009/1010 season, Sunday Mba went to Dolphin on loan from Rangers and another matter is to know how he ended up in Warri Wolves. The chairman of our state FA, Chidi Okenwa has all the documents and we will be going to Abuja to sort out things.”
Rangers had claimed they have documents to prove Sunday Mba is the club’s bonafide player. However, the Delta FA said they equally had documents to prove that Rangers had no genuine claim on Mba.