Sports Minister Sunday Dare and football loving Nigerians celebrated the late Super Eagles attacker, Rashidi Yekini, on his posthumous 56th birthday.
On his Twitter’s handle, the minister stated: “Today is the 56th Posthumous Birthday Of one of Nigeria’s greatest footballers. I celebrate him and may his soul continue to Rest In Peace.”
Yekini is a name that will forever be remembered for greatness in Nigeria and Africa.
The Nigerian striker’s professional career spanned more than two decades, playing in six other countries apart from Nigeria.
Nigerians on Twitter reacted as The Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) remembered the former Abiola Babes player.
The goal king unarguably most deadly Nigeria attacker would have turned 56 Wednesday, October 23, if he was still alive, evoking the fond memories of his extremely impressive sojourn in football before his painful demise at 48 on May 2012.
Yekini started his football career with UNTL Kaduna before a spell at Shooting Stars, Abiola Babes, Africa Sports and he went to Europe to ply his trade, signing for Portuguese side Vitória de Setúbal, Olympiacos, Sporting Gijón, Zürich, Bizerte, Al-Shabab, Julius Berger, and Gateway.
The 1994 Africa Cup of Nations winner was the first Nigerian to win the African footballer of the year award in 1993 and scored Super Eagles’ first-ever World Cup goal in a 3–0 win against Bulgaria at USA ’94 but FIFA took to their social media pay tribute to the late striker Yekini on 56th posthumous birthday.
He scored Nigeria’s first World Cup goal.
In Nigeria’s debut at the FIFA World Cup in the United States in 1994, Yekini scored Eagles’ first goal in a 3–0 win against Bulgaria.
Yekini still holds the record of the Super Eagles’ highest scorer despite playing his last game in 1998.
He scored 37 goals for Nigeria in 58 appearances and no one has broken that record after 21 years.
Yekini enjoyed a successful season with Vitoria Setubal in the Portuguese top flight and took the form to the 1994 Africa Cup of Nations in Tunisia where he emerged the top scorer and also won the Most Valuable Player of the tournament.