Keshi Deseves To Be Crowned The ‘Igwe’ Of Our Soccer-Kalu



His father was Ogbueshi[killer of Elephant]Frederick Aniemeka.Today,former  Governor ,Abia State, Dr. Orji Uzor Kalu thinks Stephen Okechukwu Keshi,First Nigerian to win the Nations Cup as player and coach, deseves to be crowned the Igwe[King ] of our soccer.

Extolling Keshi’s profile,Kalu said,”The first Nigerian to qualify  another nation,Togo, for the the ,first to take three -Togo,Mali,Nigeria to the Nations Cup,first to play in four continents-Africa,Europe,Asia,America,first Nigerian to win AFCON gold,silver and bronze both as player and coach, and many more.”

The ex-governor described Keshi as a true Nigerian who cherishes friendship more than gold and a great patriot ready to in defence of fatherland.

“Born in to Igbo parents from the South-south,bred in Lagos and married to an Ishan,Edo lady,Keshi’s friends are legion.At St.Paul’s Ebute-Meta,his pals were Paul Okoku and Segun Olukanmi.When he joined New Nigeria Bank, Benin in 1979,it was because of Henry Nwosu and Edema Benson,snubbing Aloy Atuegbu’s better deal from Rangers.Keshi met his wife Kate through Franklin Howard’s friend Lizzy.And of his Assistants in the Eagles team Sylvanus Okpala was a pioneer Flying Eagle like Humphrey Edobor,Sam Igwenagu and Prince Afejukwu.He also remembers Akeem Alade and Demola Adekogbe,” Kalu continued.

And now Keshi’s patriotism.”In 1993,Coach Gilbert Gress  of Stasbourg France,took the Captain’s band from the Nigerian for playing  in a qualifier against South Africa.In 1994,Keshi was sacked by Belgian club RWD Molenbeek,again, for choosing over club.He was also attacked by armed robbers at Oshodi losing his Benz car and almost losing a brother in the process.Do not forget he was sanctioned by the NFA in 1985 and sacked in 2002 after assisting to qualify Nigeria for the ,”Kalu said.

Yet Keshi stood by his .In Kalu’s words,”As far back as 1992,South African journalist Mark Gleeson had tipped Keshi to coach Nigeria,describing him as world class.You saw how Keshi screamed when Gleeson asked him questions after the Ivorian feat.It took Nigeria 20 years to hire Keshi as Manager.And for the very first ,Eagles beat a team they  could not  in the group phase, in the grand-finale.Manfred Hoener could not do it against Cameroun in 1988,nor Clemens Westerhof against Algeria in 1990.Homeboy Keshi achieved it.”

 

 

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