Former Super Eagles captain and Chelsea legend, John Mikel Obi is beginning a talent hunting programme in Nigeria.
He is set to create an opportunity to stardom for young and talented Nigerian athletes. According to the former Super Eagles’ mid fielder, he is trying to give back to the society that brought him out of the streets into stardom.
Mikel started out as an academy player in Jos, Plateau State and rose gradually, first to the Golden Eaglets, then to the highest level; leading the Nigeria football team to both the World Cup and Olympic Games in 2016 and 2018.
His new initiative is code-named ‘Back2Base’. He said he is keen to create a pathway for others to succeed through sports the same way he did.
The 35-year old who is one of the only three Nigerians to have lifted the prestigious UEFA Champions League trophy is ready to use his new Back2Base programme to uplift hundreds of other young talented Nigerians
The former midfielder fondly referred to as The Catalyst is also willing to put to use his global connections to help the talented young Nigerians not just in football but also in basketball and tennis.
The maiden edition of the Back2Base programme will be taking place from the 9th – to the 11th of June, 2022 at the University of Lagos, Sports Centre.
“Opportunities don’t happen, you create them. Someone created an opportunity for me and It’s been a dream of mine to do the same for young, talented Nigerian athletes.” Mikel who in 2021 was appointed by the Federal Government of Nigeria as one of its Youth Ambassadors declared
“I would like to announce the first edition of my Back2Base program which will give aspiring professional athletes the opportunity to showcase their talents in sports like Football, Basketball and Tennis.”
Aside from providing a platform for the youngsters to showcase their talents, Mikel who is well-known for his philanthropic gestures also promises to reward the outstanding youngsters with cash gifts.
He said: “A monetary price will be awarded to the most promising athletes across the three sports. They will also be hosted to an exclusive dinner with me where a mentorship session will be held.
The three-day event will also afford young kids a rare privilege to see and have photo opportunities with Mikel’s Champions League medals.
This event is free for all. For Mikel, giving a chance to someone to live his/her dreams is a worthy course worth pursuing.