John Obi Mikel

Wilfred Ndidi reveals how he became a midfielder

Leicester City midfielder Wilfred Ndidi has credited former Genk manager Peter Maes for switching his playing position from centre-back to midfield. Last season, the Nigeria international was drafted into the heart of the Foxes’ defence on several occasions and he delivered some impressive performances. His initial knowledge as a centre-back has also helped him shine in the Premier League as one of the best defensive midfielders in the division. The 24-year-old, who moved to King Power Stadium in January 2017, disclosed that his role was changed at Genk after he played for Nigeria’s youth teams and his former side Nath Boys as a defender. “I started my career as a central defender during my days in Nath Boys. Even in the U-17, U-20, national team…I was a defender,” Ndidi told the Guardian ...

Mikel Obi leaves Stoke City, joins Kuwaiti club

Former Nigeria captain John Obi Mikel has joined Al Kuwait SC, the Kuwaiti Premier League side on a year’s deal. The announcement was made by the club on Thursday, after Mikel and Stoke City cancelled their contract by mutual consent. Mikel’s new club finished third in the division last season behind Al-Qadsia and champions Al-Arabi. The Nigerian spent 11 years and made 372 appearances across all competitions for Chelsea. After Chelsea he played for Trabzonspor and Middlesbrough, before heading to China to spend two years with Tianjin Teda in the Chinese Super League. Mikel returned to UK in August 2020 to play Stoke City. Stoke boss Michael O’Neill told the club’s official website: ‘Although John triggered the second year of his contract, we always had an agreement in place whereby we wou...

Stoke, Derby County others eager to have Akin Odimayo

English footballer of Nigerian descent Akin Odimayo has been caught in the middle as Championship sides Stoke and Derby County jostle to have him in their squad. The Swindon Town defender has been impressive doing his job and has attracted attention from a number of clubs in recent times. Odimayo joined The Robins last summer on a free transfer from Reading, and has played over 30 times for the League One side. He has played at both full-back and in central defence for Swindon, who are battling hard to avoid relegation. Despite their struggles as a team, the 21-year-old has impressed. Therefore, Swindon are set to take up the one-year option they have on him before then selling him. Aside from Stoke and County, Sheffield Wednesday and Preston North End are also in the race for Odimayo. Odi...

Report: Former Chelsea star to join Stoke City on a one-year contract, medical on Monday

Former Chelsea midfielder John Obi Mikel will make a return to English football with Championship side Stoke City next week, The Telegraph reports. The Nigerian, who enjoyed a trophy-laden career with the Blues between 2006 and 2017, was recently contracted to Trabzonspor, where he made 23 appearances. Mikel only joined the Turkish outfit last summer, but he mutually terminated his contract in March this year after he was reluctant to continue playing amid the coronavirus pandemic. It is now reported that he is on the cusp of returning to the Championship, where he previously spent the second half of the 2018/19 season with Middlesbrough. The 33-year-old is said to be have already held talks with manager Michael O’Neill and he is scheduled to join the Potters on a one-year deal following a...