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Mikel at a crossroads




NEWS: Mikel at a crossroads [New Sports] » Naijacrawl
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Mikel Obi has some tough decisions to make when the transfer window opens in January as more European clubs have shown strong interest in the Chelsea outcast.

The Super Eagles captain has been frozen out at Stamford Bridge since the arrival of former Italy manager Antonio Conte in the summer.

Although he has yet to get playing minutes under Conte, Nigeria coach Gernot Rohr has kept faith with the 29-year-old midfielder, who has guided the Eagles to two successive victories in the Russia 2018 World Cup qualifiers.

Nigeria snatched a stunning 2-1 away win over Zambia World Cup qualifying opener on October 9 in Ndola before subduing stubborn Algeria 3-1 in Uyo on November 12.

Despite Mikel rounding off a good performance with a goal in the defeat of the Desert Foxes, Conte was not amused as he has stuck with Frenchman NGolo Kante and Serbian Nemanja Matic in the defensive midfield.

The Nigerians continued absence from the Blues lineup weekly set tongues wagging, but Conte has supplied the answer.

The situation with Obi Mikel is simple, hes in the squad. He stays with us. We know that, at the end of the season, probably his contract will expire, Conte told reporters recently.

But I dont know what happens now. Hes a player who is part of this squad, and every single game I take my decision about him.

However, Mikel has confirmed he is not on good terms with the former Juventus manager.

Im not that kind of person who wants to find excuses, nor Im trying to escape my responsibilities.

People may think that Conte is angry with me because I did not take part in Chelseas pre-season training camp, but I wouldnt swap my bronze Olympic medal with a starting spot in Chelseas XI. I do not regret to have played in the Olympic Games with my national team, it was a great honour for me, quoted him saying.

Mikel, who has won the Premier League, FA Cup, League Cup, Champions League and Europa League since he joined Chelsea from Norwegian club Lyn Oslo in 2006, is expected to leave Stamford Bridge in the summer as a new offer is not forthcoming.

The South Africa 2013 Africa Cup of Nations winner arrived at Chelsea under a cloud of controversy. Manchester United had announced in 2005 that they had struck a deal with Lyn Oslo to sign Mikel on a four-year contract initially worth 4m.

However, Chelsea, under Jose Mourinho, later claimed that they had already had an agreement with Mikel and his agents.

The issue was resolved after Chelsea agreed to pay United 12m and Lyn Oslo 4m to terminate the contract Mikel signed with the Old Trafford side.

Mikel, who was a first-team player under Mourinho, Avram Grant, Felipe Scolari, Guus Hiddink, Carlo Ancelotti, Andr Villas-Boas, Roberto Di Matteo and Rafael Bentez, is one of the players who have made headlines ahead of the January window.

He has been linked with a move to mega-rich Chinese Super League side Shanghai Shenhua, Man United, Marseille, Besiktas, Galatasaray and Inter Milan.

Struggling French Ligue 1 side Marseille were reported to have succeeded in convincing Mikel to shun a big-money move to the Chinese Super League, who have reportedly offered the player a 70,000-a-week deal, to help revive the club. According to reports, Les Phoceens are ready to smash their wage structure to make the midfielder their highest-paid player (a 170,000-a-week deal) in a bid to lure him to Stade Velodrome in January.

Mikels agent John Shittu confirmed on Thursday a host of European clubs were interested in his client.

Its very likely he will leave Chelsea in January. There are many teams interested in the player, Shittu was quoted by The Sun as saying.

In the past we spoke with Inter Milan but now there are a lot of Italian clubs that want him. I will not reveal the names, but there are other Italian teams on his trail.

And beware: the clubs in UK, Spain, Germany and even in China know the value of the player and requested information about him.

After a torrid half season that has seen Mikel sidelined at Chelsea, a move is imminent in the transfer window, but he faces a difficult choice with a decision on his next destination with many clubs interested in his services.

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Mikel Obi Joins New Club




SPORTS NEWS: Mikel Obi Joins New Club [New Sports News] » Naijacrawl
Photo: Naijacrawl
Former Super Eagle of Nigeriscaptian and Chelsea legend John Mikel Obi has joined Kuwait Sporting Club after having his deal with Stoke City cancelled by mutual consent.The 34-year-old made 41 appearances in two seasons with Stoke and his deal had another 12 months left to run.Mikel joined Stoke from Turkish side Trabzonspor, having previously spent 11 years with Chelsea.Stoke boss Michael O'Neill said there was an agreement he could leave for a "significant oversea...
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Photo: Naijacrawl
 Super Eagles captain, John Mikel Obi has escaped a plane crash. The flight of Mikel Obi and his Middlesbrough teammates had to be cancelled after a fear of a possible plane crash. Mikel and the other Middlesbrough players were at risk, as the club had to call off their flight home from Newport County as the plane was grounded due to engine failure. The 31-year-old Mikel Obi who joined Championship side Middlesbrough on a short term deal was reportedly at ri...
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Russia 2018 World Cup qualifier : Mikel boasts We can beat any team in Africa




NEWS: Russia 2018 World Cup qualifier : Mikel boasts We can beat any team in Africa [New Sports] » Naijacrawl
Photo: Naijacrawl
Nigeria are capable of beating any team in Africa following their 4-0 destruction of Cameroon, according to team captain John Obi Mikel.The Super Eagles handed the reigning African champions a football lesson in their 2018 World Cup qualifying clash in Uyo, with Odion Ighalo, Mikel, Victor Moses and Kelechi Iheanacho all finding the back of the net.The result leaves Nigeria on the cusp of qualifying for the 2018 finals. One more win from their remaining thre...
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