Chelsea legend and ex-Super Eagles captain John Mikel Obi is retiring from football aged 35 after a 20-year professional career.
Chelsea legend and former Super Eagles captain John Obi Mikel has announced his retirement from football at the age of 35.
The former Nigeria international took to Instagram on Tuesday, September 27 to announce his decision to hang up the boots with a lengthy statement.
The legendary midfielder’s message read: “There is a saying that ‘all good things must come to an end’, and for my career as a professional footballer, that day is today.
“I look back on the last 20 years of my career, and I must say that I am very satisfied with all that I have been able to achieve and especially with the human being that it has helped to shape.
“All of this would not have been possible without the unwavering support of my family, my managers, my clubs, my coaches, my teammates and above all my ever loyal fans.
“You supported me through my ups and downs, even on the days when I didn’t live up to your expectations. Thank you so much.
“I would also like to encourage everyone I have in any way inspired in my career to never give up on their dreams, because every time you think about quitting, remember why you have started.
“This is not a goodbye, this is the start of another journey, another chapter of my life. I look forward to what the future holds and I hope you walk with me. Thanks.”
Mikel started his professional career in 2004 with the Norwegian team Lyn. Chelsea then scouted him two years later and brought him into their star squad at Stamford Bridge.
During his 11-year spell in west London, he amassed a total of six goals and 13 assists in 372 appearances.
The 35-year-old has won two Premier League titles, three FA Cup trophies, the 2007 League Cup and the 2013 Europa League.
Mikel was also part of the Chelsea squad that won the 2012 Champions League trophy.
Obi Mikel left Chelsea in 2017 for Chinese side Tianjin TEDA before returning to England for Middlesbrough just two years later. He then moved to Turkey in 2019 where he won the Turkish Cup with Trabzonspor a year later.
Obi Mikel made one final return to England in 2020 for Stoke until leaving for Kuwait SC a year later.
The Chelsea hero had been a free agent since last November until his decision to end his career.