John Obi Mikel, the captain of Nigeria’s senior national football team, Super Eagles, has quit the team.
Mikel announced his retirement from international football on his Instagram page on Thursday.
The former Chelsea player said he wanted to walk away after a long and illustrious service to Nigeria.
The 32-year old said wrote: “Egypt is a country where I started and have finished my National career. In 2006, I played my first official championship for my country.
2019 African Cup of Nations marks my last championship for National Team with Super Eagles.
My national career started in 2003 under 17 World Cup and I am grateful for the national team for placing me on the world arena and giving me an opportunity to show my skill and have an incredible National and International career.”
Give the youth a chance
Mikel said it was time “to retire from the National team and let the youth take over, who’ have done an amazing job securing a bronze medal at AFCON 2019.”
“Thank you to all my Nigerian supporters and to my Country for all the trust, support and love you have shown me over the past 15 years. Mikel, am out!” he concluded.
Mikel was part of the Nigerian team that won bronze at this year’s the Africa cup of nation tournament.
He played at the 2003 U-17 World Cup, represented the Nigeria under-20 team at the 2005 FIFA World Youth Championship.
At the 2005 FIFA World Youth Championship, he won the Silver Ball. That was the prize for the second-best player at the tournament (behind Lionel Messi).
Nigeria finished that tournament as runner-up to Messi’s Argentina.