Sunday Mbah, Uzoenyi, Oshaniwa And Forgotten 2013 Super Eagles AFCON Revelations
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By Vitus Michael
In 2013, Coach Stephen Keshi, may his soul continue to rest in greater peace, won the 29th edition of the Africa Cup of Nations for a record 3 times for Nigeria.
However, The Big Boss, as he was fondly called, achieved the feat using 6 home-based players in the sauad some of who were great
revelations at the tournament held in the Orange nation, South Africa.
The Nigeria Professional Football League, NPFL has thrilled us with some beautiful performances from good players as the Super Eagles six especially Sunday Mbah, the hero of the final match on February 10, 2013 took the continent by storm.
Some have gone on to Europe to establish themselves as squad players for their teams, while others are in obscurity in inconspicuous leagues.
Some of the, particularly Mbah and Uzoenyi were unable to mount a fight back after the competition as they went from one club to the other until they were sent into oblivion
But let’s take a look at these revelations in 2013 and what happened thereafter.
The 2013 AFCON winner is one of the players that are now playing in obscurity. Ejike set the league alight with his fantastic skill on the ball and lightning speed.
The 33-year-old was selected to go to the AFCON 2013 and FIFA world cup. He was awarded the best player at the 2014 CHAN. He moved abroad to Mamelodi Sundowns in 2014.
Ejike played in the Bosnian league after being away from football for over two years; He played for Zvijezda before signing for his current Montenegrin side, Titograd, in July 2020.
The former Kano Pillars defender was a rock in defence for Sai Masu Gida. He was one of the most considerable talents from the league and represented Nigeria at the 2016 CHAN.
The stout defender later went in search of greener pastures in 2018 when he moved to Bulgarian side, Lokomotiv Plovdiv.
The former Sunshine defender had a difficult start to life, but with time, he became a regular. Injuries and loss of form ensured that he moved to Kazakhstan club Tobol in January 2020.
But a long time spent on the sidelines due to injury ensured that the former CHAN finalist made his way to the Indian club, Jamshedpur FC, in September 2020.
He was part of the squad that won the 2013 edition of AFCON in South Africa. The former Sharks left-back also made the 2014 World Cup squad. He dumped the now-defunct Sharks FC for Ashdod FC in Israel.
The 30-year-old then moved to Hearts in 2015, but that moved signalled the downturn for his career as he could only muster 24 appearances after spending two years in Scotland.
In 2018, Juwon was signed by Akwa United, where he made 12 appearances. He is currently without a club.
The scorer of the winner against Burkina Faso in the final of 2013 AFCON. Sunday Mbah was intrinsic to Nigeria’s triumph at the 2013 AFCON.
He was on loan at Rangers before the World Cup. After the world cup, there was a back and forth between Warri Wolves and Enugu Rangers when he wanted to leave for Bastia.
In December 2014, the rugged midfielder signed for French side, Bastia, after which he left for Yeni Malatyaspor in 2015. The 32-year-old is currently without a club.