Mikel Obi retires from football

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Former Super Eagles captain, Mikel Obi, has retired from football.

Obi made the announcement via a statement shared on his Instagram page on Tuesday.

The 35-year-old former Chelsea midfielder wrote: “There is a saying that ‘all good things must come to an end’, and for my professional football career, that day is today.

“I look back at the past 20 years of my career, and I must say that I am very satisfied with all that I was able to achieve and more importantly the human it has helped shape.

“All of this would not have been possible without the unwavering support of my family, managers, clubs, coaches, teammates and most importantly my ever-loyal fans. You supported me through my highs and lows, even on days that I did not live up to your expectations. I say a big thank you.

“I will also like to encourage everyone who I may have inspired one way or the other in the course of my career to never give up on their dreams, for every time you think about quitting, remind yourself why you started.

“This is not goodbye, it’s the start of another journey, another chapter of my life. I look forward to what the future holds and I hope you will walk with me. Thank you,” Obi stated.

Mikel Obi began his career with Plateau United, before joining Norwegian club Lyn at the age of 17 in 2004.

In 2006, he made a controversial transfer to Chelsea after Manchester United claimed they had already signed him.

Obi stayed with Chelsea for 11 years, before moving to China with Tianjin TEDA in 2017.

After two years in China, he returned to England on a short-term deal with Middlesbrough, before joining Trabzonspor on a free transfer in July 2019.

The former Super Eagles midfielder moved back to England in August 2020, joining Stoke City.

In July 2019, Obi said the 2019 African Cup of Nations would be his last tournament for Nigeria as he retired at the end of the competition, in which Nigeria came third.

In a 14-year international career between 2005 and 2019, he played 91 times for Nigeria, scoring six goals.

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