Former Chelsea star and Nigeria captain John Mikel Obi said picking Chelsea over Manchester United in the 2006 transfer was the “best decision” of his life.
Mikel had quite a career at Chelsea
Mikel became one of the most decorated players. He won the Champions League and Europa League as well, 2 premier league cups, and 4 FA cups in his career at Chelsea. He left Stamford Bridge in 2017.
What he said to BBC sports Africa.
“I don’t regret any decision I made because I enjoyed everything I achieved at Chelsea – it’s the best decision I have ever made in my life,”
“I signed a pre-contract for Manchester United when I was 17. If you are a kid and you see Sir Alex Ferguson right in front of you with the contract, of course you will be tempted.”
Chelsea were shocked when they signed him from their arch-rivals. There were some news about Mikel getting kidnapped.
“I acted as a young kid and as soon as Chelsea heard the news, they came and got me out of Norway,” recalled the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations winner.
“That’s when people started saying that I was kidnapped. It wasn’t a great moment for me then. I just wanted to play football because I was so young.”
The 35- years old started his career as a midfielder and was really impressive during his youth days. He helped Nigeria reach the final of the 2005 U20 world cup.
New role in new team
Mikel being an attacking midfielder had to switch to a defensive midfielder because that’s what Jose Mourinho, Chelsea’s boss at that time wanted.
“Mourinho decided that he wanted me to play the defensive midfield position. At the end of the day, he is the coach and made the decision,”
“We discussed and he felt that because of the big midfield players he had in his squad at Chelsea that I should play the defensive midfield role.
“[Claude] Makelele was just finishing his career at Chelsea, so Mourinho wanted me to take over from Makelele.”
Had an outstanding career.
Mikel played 89 games for Nigeria, in two world cups and won the 2013 nations cup. He announced his retirement from international football after 3 years in 2016.
“I always wanted to win the Champions League because it is the best football tournament in the world apart from the World Cup,”
“To then win something with the national team was great. As a kid watching the likes of Jay-Jay Okocha and Kanu, I said I want to win something with the national team.
“I am so happy to have managed to do that. I will rank both of them top as my most cherished trophies.”
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