Posted by Nelson Dafe | 22 February 2014 | 11,016 times
Somewhere in Barcelos, a city in Portugal, a young Nigerian was making history on Sunday, February 16. When Ndubuisi Mikel Agu replaced Josue in Porto’s 2-1 away win against Gil Vincent in a Portuguese division one match last weekend, he became the first ever Nigerian player to feature in Porto’s main team in its 120 years history.
The young Nigerian national under-20 team invitee joined the Portuguese giants in 2009 as a youth player and has worked relentlessly since then to become a first team player for the former UEFA Champions League winners. Now that dream has become a reality.
Mikel (he got the nickname from fans in Benin City who likened his play to that of Chelsea star and compatriot Mikel Obi) is a midfielder with good vision and delicious close control of the ball. He can play anywhere in the middle.
The youth team coach who discovered him in Benin City, Douglas Idahosa, spoke with News Express and expressed his delight with the breakthrough of his product. “I’m very happy for him. He is a good player and I’m sure he will continue to succeed in the game,” he said.
Idahosa was coach of Nigeria’s Coca Cola team that won the maiden edition of the Nigerian Bottling Company’s Copa Cup competition for grassroots players in Africa in 2009. Mikel Agu was a part of the Nigerian squad and he emerged the Most Valuable Player (MVP) of the tournament.
In 2012 Agu, speaking with News Express, expressed his love for Portugal and Porto. “Ever since I arrived here in Portugal I have enjoyed every single moment,” he had said, adding: “They (Porto) have been very good to me.”
20-year-old Mikel Agu spots jersey number 46 for Porto and would be hoping to help his team overhaul a four-point deficit and finish first, above current table toppers Benfica, at the end of the current Portuguese league season.
•Photo shows Mikel Agu displaying his FC Porto jersey.
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