Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.


Mikel backs Nigeria for Confederations Cup glory

06 June 2013, 07:26

Lagos - Chelsea midfielder Mikel Obi is backing Nigeria to become the first African team to win this month's Confederations Cup in Brazil.

Cameroon boast the best African result in the competition when they lost in the 2003 final to France.

"It will be great to win the Confederations Cup and add to my medals collection. It will be another history for Nigeria and Africa," said Mikel.

The Chelsea star will be his country's star attraction at this competition involving continental champions, which kicks off in Brazil on June 15.

Mikel made his Eagles debut eight years ago in a friendly against Libya in Tripoli just months after he impressed at the FIFA under-20 World Cup in the Netherlands, where Nigeria lost to a Lionel Messi-inspired Argentina in the final.

The 26-year-old has since grown in stature as he won several major honours with Chelsea including the Champions League last year and the Europa League this season.

He has often been criticised for not showing enough commitment to the national team cause but he more than answered his critics when he played an integral role as Nigeria were crowned African champions for a third time in February.

"Mikel was outstanding at the Nations Cup. Even though he is still young, he has a lot of experience as he has been at the top for a long time," remarked former Nigeria international Garba Lawal.

"He has been successful and he is only getting better."

"Mikel is very influential for Nigeria and he will do more for both club and country going forward," added ex-Nigeria skipper Mutiu Adepoju.

Mikel started out as an attacking midfielder with the Nigeria under-17 team and was hailed as heir apparent to the legendary Augustine 'Jay Jay' Okocha, but he was later converted to a holding midfielder by Jose Mourinho.

He may not be spectacular but he is tactically disciplined and gets the job done by ensuring the defence keep their shape at all times.

His efficiency has been rewarded with a contract that keeps him at the London club till June 2017.

His club career has further received a major boost with the return to Stamford Bridge of his mentor Mourinho.

In the Eagles' midfield, he enjoys a less restrictive role as Lazio youngster Ogenyi Onazi and Nations Cup hero Sunday Mba do much of the grafting for him.



Read News24’s Comments Policy

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Read more from our Users

Nigeria @ 56: Words to my green f...

A leader’s job is not to dictate, but rather to be respected, admired and be a trustee, of the land we love, with so much potential, a land which should be freer than free. Its still a long way to fufilling our destiny! Read more...

Submitted by
Isaac Asabor263
Recession: An opportunity for Nig...

The recession should be seen as an opportunity for the country’s promotion as long as we all collectively conduct ourselves in a patriotic manner, writes Isaac Asabor.  Read more...

Submitted by
Black and White

We want to imitate the whites in everything because we are ignorant of our inherent originality and content. We spend all our Naira to acquire his inventions because we so oblivious of our natural endowments that we allow him have it for free. Read more...

Submitted by
Nate Nat
Adamawa State University Mubi: A ...

ADSU integrity forum has accused the Sunday Joshua Wugira, a lawyer, of adopting unorthodox tactics by abusing his privilege by attacking the integrity of ADSU Vice Chancellor Dr. Moses Zira Zaruwa, writes a News24 reader. Read more...

Submitted by
Abdulsalam Jubril
My Country Nigeria (Part One)

Poetry by Abdulsalam Jubril.

Submitted by
Abdulsalam Jubril
Recession, dearth in leadership a...

Every leader has the opportunity to become great and making himself immortal in the lives and hearts of people for generations to come. Will Mr. President seize this opportunity?, questions Abdulsalam Jubril. Read more...