London - England manager Sam Allardyce has revealed that
Austin Okocha is the best captain he ever worked with, Goal reports.
Okocha joined Bolton Wanderers on a free transfer after
leaving PSG in the summer of 2002 after the FIFA World Cup. His debut season,
despite being hampered by injuries, made him a favourite with the Bolton fans,
with the team printing shirts with the inscription "Jay-Jay – so good they
named him twice".
He steered the team away from relegation with seven goals,
including the team Goal of the Season in the vital league win against West Ham
United. This was voted Bolton's best Premier League goal in a fans vote in
2008. The next season saw Okocha receive more responsibility as he was given
the captain's armband following Guðni Bergsson's retirement, a position he
served for three years.
As captain he led Bolton to their first cup final in nine
years where they finished runners-up in the 2004 Football League Cup to
Middlesbrough FC. In 2006, he was stripped of the captaincy.
Also see: WATCH: How Jay-Jay Okocha was greeted by Ibrahimovic, Cavani at PSG
“Jay Jay Okocha. On and off the field he was the captain you
"In a multi-national side from all over the world he
could speak four different languages, communicate very well with some of the
players who couldn't speak quite as good English.
“He sorted the odd scuffle out in the dressing room, talked
to the players about how we had to go out and win. He'd take the manager's
instructions and apply them in the right way.
“Then there was outstanding ability on the field, leading by
example and showing everybody he wasn't a mercenary which was suggested in the
beginning, that he'd only come for the money. He became an iconic figure at
that Okocha has launched a foundation in a bid to give back to the society.
Tagged Jay-Jay Okocha Foundation, the new NGO is founded to
promote education, peace and unity in Nigeria.
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- News24 Nigeria