The Premier League has been graced by many top quality Nigerian players over the years. But who were some of the best?
Best Nigerian footballers that have played in Premier
Take a trip down memory lane with Marathonbet today, and remember some of the best Nigerian players of the Premier League. Have we missed someone? Let us know!
1. Jay-Jay Okocha
A great Nigerian player of the Premier League. The man so good, they named him twice. After first making a name for himself in Germany, then later Istanbul with Fenerbahçe, and then Paris Saint German, the attacking midfielder made his way to the Premier League, with Bolton Wanderers. The silky-smooth magician immediately caught the attention of the Premier League’s global audience, with his audacious nutmegs and stepovers. He went on to make 124 Premier League appearances for Bolton, scoring 14 goals and registering 11 assists.
2. Nwankwo Kanu
Not only a two-time Premier League winner, but also a Premier League invincible. Kanu ended his Premier League career at Portsmouth, where he assisted the strike partnership of Crouch and Defoe. Not a bad Premier League career at all. One of the best Nigerian players in Premier League history.
As the famous terrace chant goes, ‘Feed the Yak and he will score’, and score he did. Yakubu scored 95 goals in his Premier League career, from 252 appearances. His final year in the Premier League proved to be his best, scoring 17 goals for Blackburn Rovers, in the 2011/12 season.
He represents somewhat of a Premier League journeyman, having also represented Portsmouth, Middlesbrough, Leicester City and Everton.
4. John Obi Mikel
There aren’t many players that have more Premier League trophies than goals, but John Obi Mikel is one of them. He won two Premier League trophies during his time at Chelsea, where he scored his only scoring goal. Mikel was part of one of the best midfield trio’s in Premier League history, alongside Michael Essien and Frank Lampard.
5. Victor Moses
Moses played an integral part in a dominant Chelsea winning the 2016/17 Premier League. Then Chelsea Manager, Antonio Conte, reinvented him into a Right Wing Back, to great effect. Following this were multiple loan spells, including Inter Milan and Fenerbahçe. However, Chelsea fans will remember him fondly, for the vital role he played in lifting that trophy.
6. Wilfred Ndidi
If this list was written in 1-2 years, you may see him at the very top. The young defensive midfielder has done wonders, filling the void left by N’Golo Kante at Leicester. Wilfred is one of the best defensive midfielders in the Premier League. You can see him getting picked up by one of the top teams in Europe soon.
7. Alex Iwobi
A product of Arsenal’s youth academy, the speedy winger went on to make great performances for the first team, winning the FA Cup in 2017. However, he wasn’t happy with the game time he was receiving, and in 2019 made a big money move to Everton for £40 million. His maternal uncle is one of Nigeria’s all-time greats, Jay-Jay Okocha.
8. Kelechi Iheanacho
The young striker started his career at the current Premier League Champions Manchester City, where he had to fight for his starting position with Sergio Aguero. Despite competition, from arguably one of the greatest strikers in Premier League history, he did go on to make over 40 appearances, scoring 12 goals. However, ultimately, he wanted more minutes, and in 2017 he moved onto Leicester City. At Leicester he is forming a successful partnership with Jamie Vardy, which has seen Leicester have a strong start to the 2019/20 season.
9. Shola Ameobi
With just under 300 Premier League appearances to his name, Shola Ameobi is somewhat of a Premier League legend. With the vast majority of those appearances coming at Newcastle, he has certainly earned legend status with the North East club. Ameobi played with some of the best at Newcastle, including the all- time Premier league record goal scorer Alan Shearer. Following his 14 year stint at Newcastle, he went on to represent a number of clubs, spread throughout the English football pyramid.
10. Peter Odemwingie
Whilst Peter Odemwingie had an admirable record as a Premier League striker, it is perhaps his failed move to QPR in 2013 for which he will be best remembered. After driving from West Bromwich Albion in the Midlands to London on deadline day, the move fell through, due to QPR not being able to sell Junior Hoilett. This led to an awkward interview in the QPR car park with reporters. He did, however, score 30 goals in his West Brom career, in under 90 games.