Mikel Obi Celebrates 27 Years

Nigerian Super Eagles and Chelsea Football Club of England international midfielder, John Michael Nchekwube Obinna, commonly called Mikel Obi, is 27 years old today.

Mikel was born on the 22nd of April, 1987, in Jos, Plateau State, Nigeria, to Igbo parents. The precociously talented lad started his official football career at the age of 12 when he was picked from over 3000 young talents to play in Pepsi Football Academy.

Mikel was later to play for Jos based team, Plateau United from where he was selected to play in the for Nigeria at the under 17 level during the FIFA Under-17 World Championships held in Finland. Subsequently, he went on trial to South Africa club Ajax Cape Town, before joining Lyn in Norway.

In 2005, Mikel played for Nigeria at the FIFA World Youth Championships held in the Netherlands. He had an excellent tournament until Nigeria reached the final, where they lost 2–1 to Argentina. Obi won the Silver Ball after being voted the tournament's second best player.

After the tournament, On 29 April 2005, Manchester United FC announced that it had struck a deal with the Norwegian club, Lyn Oslo to sign the player but Chelsea later issued a counter-claim, suggesting that they already had an agreement with Mikel and his agents, though Lyn Oslo denied this claim.

However, subsequent reports indicated that Chelsea claimed to have been involved in arranging the player's original move to Europe with a view to signing him at a later date.

Further substance was added to this claim after it was revealed that the player had impressed Chelsea manager José Mourinho while training with the club's first-team squad during the summer of 2004 and eventually, he joined Chelsea where he has been playing since. He has gone on to become one of the main stays in the Super Eagles.

Join us in wishing Mikel Obi a very happy birthday.

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