Nigeria and African football legend, Mikel Obi, has announced his retirement from professional football after a trophy-laden career spanning over 20 years.

The former Chelsea midfielder, made the announcement on his Instagram handle on Tuesday, September 27, 2022.

“There is a saying that “all good things must come to an end”, and for my professional football career, that day is today.

“I look back at the past 20 years of my career, and I must say that I am very satisfied with all that I was able to achieve and more importantly the human it has helped shape,” the former midfield dynamo said.

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A post shared by Mikel Obi (@mikel_john_obi)

The African Nations Cup winner added that his career was made possible by the support of his coaches, family, fans and teammates.

“All of this would not have been possible without the unwavering support of my family, managers, clubs, coaches, teammates and most importantly my ever-loyal fans.

“You supported me through my highs and lows, even on days that I did not live up to your expectations. I say a big thank you.”

The former Lyn Oslo player further encouraged all who have been inspired by his football journey “to never give up on their dream, for every time you think about quitting, remind yourself why you started.”

He added that “this is not goodbye, it’s the start of another journey, another chapter of my life. I look forward to what the future holds and I hope you will walk with me. Thank you.”

Mikel started his career with Nigerian side club Plateau United, before joining Norwegian club Lyn in 2004. In 2006, he moved to Chelsea where he stayed for 11 years winning the Premier League title, the Champions League and the Europa League, among others.

He later moved to Chinese side Tianjin TEDA in 2017. After two years in China, he returned to England on a short-term deal with Middleborough, before joining Trabzonspor on a free transfer in July 2019. Mikel moved back to England in August 2020 joining Stoke City.

After making his senior national team on 17 August 2005, when he came on as a second-half substitute in a 1–0 friendly win over Libya, he went on to make 91 appearances scoring 6 and winning the 2013 African Cup of Nations trophy.

Until November last year, Mikel played for Al Kuwait SC but his contract was terminated by the club for undisclosed reasons.

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