by way of JOE APU
again in the ‘80s, when the enormous stars of Nigerian football moved in droves to the Belgium league with the Late Stephen Okechukwu Keshi best the train together with his move to Anderlecht in 1987, little did any individual assume that it could open the flood gate for others.
one of the vital gamers that joined the train then incorporated Etim Essien, Late Osaro Obobaifo, Peter Rufai, Augustine Eguavoen, Ndubuisi Okosieme and Phillip Osondu, Victor Ikpeba (Monaco), Nwankwo Kanu and George Finidi (Ajax).
it would be recalled that Rufai’s transfer to Europe was first to Belgium where he spent six years with Lokeren between 1987-1991 and later Beveren between 1991-1993.
Augustine Eguavoen moved to Belgium in 1986. He spent 9 years in Belgium where he shone for KAA Gent between 1986 -1990, and later ok.V. Kortrijk between 1990 -1994. He back to ok.V. Kortrijk between 1995 -1996 after a short stint in Spain.
Philip Osondu played in Belgium for teams that included Anderlecht (1989-1996), RWDM (1990-1992), La Louviere(1994-1995), Union Saint Gillis(1996), and Diegem game(1999-2002).
Etim Essien performed in Belgium for ok.A.A Gent, Lokeren(1988-1990), and Lierse SK(1991-1992).
Osaro Obobaifo performed in Belgium for KRC Genk. Ndubuisi Okosieme played in Belgium for KFC Eeklo.
Christopher Nwosu played for Beerschot, St. Truiden and Germinal Ekeren in Belgium.
In latest times then again, the train of Nigerian players have changed tracks from Europe to the foremost League Soccer-MLS and nowadays to the chinese super League the place irresistible monies are dangled at prime soccer stars.
In February 2016, Obafemi Martins joined Shanghai Shenhua and pocketed about $ 6.6 million on a short nine-month deal. Martins despite the mega bucks received off to a gradual start, going scoreless in his first seven appearances and having just one purpose via 11 matches while principally coming off the bench.
by October, 2016, the previous tremendous Eagles striker reportedly signed a contract extension as a way to preserve him at Shanghai Shenhua via 2017 and net him about $ 9 million.
just last month, John Mikel Obi moved to the chinese language super League after his switch to Tianjin TEDA was once verified.
Mikel, who had been frozen out of Chelsea’s first team this season with N’Golo Kante, Nemanja Matic, Nathaniel Chalobah and Cesc Fabregas beforehand in the pecking order, is reportedly incomes £140,000 per week.
Mikel’s move made him the second participant to swap West London for the a long way East, following Oscar who has signed for Shanghai SIPG.
Mikel spent 11 years at Stamford Bridge after controversially becoming a member of Chelsea, despite showing at a Manchester United press conference and posing with a United shirt together with his name on it.
The Nigerian captain is understood to have signed a three-yr deal, after a successful spell in England, successful the Champions League, two leading League titles and 4 FA Cups.
He performed in pre-season with Chelsea remaining summer time but then left the squad to win an Olympic bronze medal with Nigeria in Rio and could not have the option again into Conte’s plans thereafter.
now not long after Mikel’s China move, Watford striker Odion Ighalo joined the money rich chinese tremendous League with a move to CSL membership Changchun Yatai after passing a clinical.
The membership officially verified the transfer to be around £20 million. The Nigerian world joined Watford in 2014 and was an integral part of their success as he played a key role in their merchandising to the prime League last season.
handiest on Tuesday, some other tremendous Eagles participant, Brown Ideye achieved his transfer to chinese language side Tianjin Teda from Olympiakos.
Ideye, who is believed to have commanded a switch price of 12 Million Euros has for the reason that united with his compatriot John Obi Mikel.
the former Dynamo Kiev striker has been at Olympiacos since the summer season of 2015 after joining the club following a disappointing one-12 months spell in the most well known League with West Bromwich Albion.
With a revenue of about three.5 million euros each season, Ideye turns into the sixth absolute best paid Nigerian participant.
aside super Eagles avid gamers which have moved to the far East for greener pastures with more waiting within the wings, super Falcons striker Asisat Oshoala dumped Arsenal girls in the ladies’s tremendous League One membership to sign up for chinese facet Dalian Quanjian.
The 22-year-previous gained the BBC’s ladies’s Footballer of the yr Award in 2015 ahead of becoming a member of Arsenal from Liverpool.
The chinese enchantment just isn’t luring most effective Nigerians however high gamers from everywhere the sector to lend a hand flip around the u . s .’s league.
while many are wont to imagine that the chinese language League is for retiring gamers like David Beckham, Didier Drogba and the likes, it received’t have slipped the notice of many that money talks on this planet of soccer with the likes of AFCON 2017 MVP Christian Bassogog of Cameroon, Axel Witsel, Ricardo Carvalho, Carlos Tevez, Alexandre Pato and plenty of others prepared for the money windfall.
Over the course of the previous three hundred and sixty five days Jackson Martinez, Ramires, Oscar and Alex Teixeira have all moved to the chinese tremendous League for a blended total of £150million.
whereas big names joining clubs outdoor Europe is nothing new, the key distinction between the present crop heading to China and those packing their luggage for places like the usa or the center East is that Martinez, Oscar and Teixeira are a ways from getting old stars.
England striker Wayne Rooney will earn £1million per week within the some distance East and is ready to finish his transfer sooner than their transfer window closes next week Tuesday.
past and present Nigerians within the chinese language League
Admas Kola (2004–2005 Inter Shanghai)
Samuel Ayorinde (2004 Shenyang Ginde)
Prince Ikpe Ekong (2004 Shenyang Ginde)
Benedict Akwuegbu (2006 Tianjin Teda, 2007 Qingdao Jonoon)
Henry Makinwa (2006 Tianjin Teda)
Gabriel Melkam (2006–2007 Xiamen Lanshi, 2008–2009 Changchun Yatai, 2011–2013 Qingdao Jonoon)
Deniran Ortega (2006 Chongqing Lifan)
Garba Lawal (2007 Changsha Ginde)
Obi Moneke (2008–2010 Henan construction)
Edison Joseph (2009 Shaanxi Chanba)
Pascal Kondaponi (2009 Qingdao Jonoon)
Ernest Jeremiah Chukwuma (2009 Hangzhou Greentown)
Alfred Emuejeraye (2010 Tianjin Teda)
Akanni-Sunday Wasiu (2010 Changsha Ginde)
Victor Agali (2010 Jiangsu Sainty)
Obiora Odita (2011 Tianjin Teda)
Peter Utaka (2012–2013 Dalian Aerbin, 2013–2014 Beijing Guoan, 2014 Shanghai Shenxin)
Yakubu (2012–2013 Guangzhou R&F)
Bentley (2013 Wuhan Zall)
Aaron Samuel Olanare (2014–2015 Guangzhou R&F)
Derick Ogbu (2014–2015 Liaoning Whowin)
Daniel Chima (2015 Shanghai Shenxin)
Obafemi Martins (2016– Shanghai Greenland Shenhua)
Anthony Ujah (2016– Liaoning Whowin)
John Obi Mikel, Brown Ideye (2017– Tianjin Teda)
Odion Ighalo (2017– Changchun Yatai)