When Nigeria national team produced such a stunning performance in its first participation at the FIFA World cup in USA 1994, Pele quickly acknowledged that Nigeria is perhaps the greatest football team to have come from Africa. He said, ”Nigeria could present a formidable African challenge and could be the team to win FIFA World cup in the near future.”

Truly, when a Nigerian team shows up in any football competition anywhere in the world, you can’t take them for granted. The West African country that has over 160 million people has broken several football records for Africa and I want to share ten of them with you.

 1.      Nigeria was placed 5th in the FIFA ranking in 1994. The best any African country has attained. No other country has come close except for cote d’ivoire within the top ten ranking.

 2. Nigeria under 16 national team nicknamed Golden Eaglets, is the first team to have won the FIFA/ Kodak World Under 16 world cup in 1985. Nigeria has since won the tournament 2 other times – 1993 and 2007.

3. Nigeria Under 23 national team nicknamed Dream Team is the first African team to have won Gold medal in the Olympics men soccer event in Atlanta 1996. Nigeria has also won silver Medal in 2008.

   Nigeria women national team nicknamed Super Falcons is the first team to have won the African women championship in 1991. The team has since then dominated the championship and has won it a record 8 times – 1995, 1998, 2000, 2002, 2004, 2006 and 2010.

 5.      Nigeria Women national team Super Falcons is the first African team to participate in the FIFA women world cup in 1991. Nigeria has since then participated in 5 other editions.

6.      Nigeria’s Mercy Akide is the first player that was awarded Africa women footballer of the year in 2001. Nigeria players has since then won the award 7 other times. Perpetual Nkwocha 4 times and Cynthia Uwak who won it in 2006 and 2007.

7. Nigeria’s Perpetual Nkwocha is the first to have won the Africa women player of the year award for a record 4 times – 2004, 2005, 2010 and 2011.

8.Nigeria’s Eynimba fc is the first team to have won CAF champions league back to back in 2003 and 2004. Shooting stars, Heartland and Enugu Rangers were runners up in previous editions.

9. Nigeria national team nicknamed Green Eagles and later ‘Super Eagles’ has won Africa cup of nations 3 times -1980, 1994 and 2012

 10. Nigeria is the first to have players win Africa footballer of the year award 6 times:
Rashidi Yekini 2 times 1990 and 1993
Emmanuel Amunike 1 time 1994
Nwankwo Kanu 2 times 1996 and 1999
Victor Ikpeba 1 time 1997

No comments

Powered by Blogger.