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Emmanuel Amuneke: Former Nigeria and Barcelona winger set for NPFL coaching return

Former Nigeria and Barcelona winger Emmanuel Amuneke is set to return to coaching after a year away from the sidelines, Soccernet.ng reports.

Amuneke’s last role was with Zambia’s Zanaco FC, where he served as both coach and consultant before leaving in 2023.

He recently applied for the Super Eagles head coach position, but the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) opted for Finidi George instead. Finidi resigned after Nigeria’s poor performances against South Africa and Benin in June, leaving the position vacant. The NFF plans to hire a foreign Technical Adviser for the team.

Reports suggest Amuneke is now close to securing a coaching job with Nigerian Professional Football League (NPFL) club Heartland FC.

ScoreNigeria reports that he has already been given the job and is set to be officially announced soon. Amuneke, who has been quietly working with his hometown club, has started recruiting players for the upcoming season.

Heartland FC were relegated to the NPFL after finishing in the 19th position on the 20-team table last season.

The club are reportedly planning to buy the NPFL slot of Beyond Limits, who earned promotion from the Nigeria National League (NNL) but face participation issues due to their affiliation with Remo Stars.

Amuneke, 53, has extensive coaching experience in domestic and international football.

He previously coached Julius Berger and Ocean Boys in Nigeria before leading the Nigeria U17 team to World Cup victory in 2015.

He also managed Tanzania’s national team, leading them to the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations, and had roles with Egypt’s Misr El Makkasa and as assistant coach of Nigeria’s national team.

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