Plans to bring the top Ivorian stars to Lagos state for an AFCON qualifier against Sierra Leone have been thwarted by the state government.

According to, the Lagos state government has called off the match because of concerns over the Ebola scourge, from which Sierra Leone is yet to get a clean bill from the World Health Organisation (WHO).

The Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) had agreed to stage the match in Lagos after Sierra Leone were banned from hosting international matches because of the deadly killer disease and had accordingly received a clearance from the ministry of health for the game to be played at the Teslim Balogun Stadium, Lagos.

Tobi Emmanuel, a Lagos-based sports editor, said: “Lagos government is not comfortable for the match to be played in Lagos, they say they don’t want to take any risks. They argued that they have lost a lot of money and top personalities on account of the Ebola scourge.

“So, Lagos will not stage the match between Sierra Leone and Cote d’Ivoire.”

The venue may have been moved to Port Harcourt, Rivers state capital as reports say the NFF has opened discussions Rivers State Government.

An official said: “They have opened talks with the Rivers State Government for the match to now be played in Port Harcourt.”

Meanwhile, Nigeria’s Super Eagles have commenced closed door training sessions at the Abuja national stadium today, ahead of their qualifying match against Tanzania in Dar es salam on Sunday, September 6.