The Nigerian football star is regarded as one of the greatest footballers to have come out of Nigeria.
Former Nigeria Super Eagles captain, John Obi Mikel has announced his retirement from the game of football at the age of 35.
The former skipper took to his official social media account on Tuesday, to announce his decision to hang his boots after two decades as a professional footballer.
“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.
“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.
Mikel also advised those who look up to him as a source of inspiration to never go back on their dreams regardless of the circumstances they might be facing.
“I will also like to encourage everyone who I may have inspired one way or the other in the course of my career to never give up on their dreams, for every time you think about quitting, remind yourself why you started.
“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 is regarded by many as one of the greatest players Nigeria has ever produced, with a sufficient trophy cabinet at both club and international levels.
The former Chelsea man first caught the eye when he represented Nigeria at the 2005 FIFA U-17 World Cup, with Nigeria finishing second to Lionel Messi’s Argentina.
After such performances on an international stage, English Premier League side, Chelsea signed him in 2006, where he played the best parts of his club career.
At Chelsea, Mikel won two Premier League titles, three FA Cups, one Football League Cup, one Community Shield, one Champions League and One Europa League during his 11-year stay at the club.
Mikel was a key figure in the Nigerian side that won the 2013 African Cup of Nations. He was also part of the Nigerian team that came third in 2006, 2010 and 2019 editions.