Mikel Obi : Dribbling Against Ronaldinho Earned Me Respect At Chelsea

John Obi Mikel and coach Samson Siasia at the Olympics in Rio

Former Chelsea midfielder, John Mikel Obi reveals how he earned John Terry’s respect during their time at the English club npflupdates.com reports.

Also read: Mikel Obi Destroy Drogba And Kalou, Says “My Statue Is At Nigerian Airports”

Mikel Obi and the England legend were teammates at Chelsea, were they won many local titles, including a UEFA Champions League title in 2012.

Mikel joined Chelsea from a Norwegian club Lyn, shortly after helping Nigeria’s Flying Eagles win a Silver medal at the FIFA U-20 World Cup in 2005. Then, he wasn’t an integral part of the Chelsea’s starting XI, as he always starts from the bench.

What Mikel Obi said about his time with England legend John Terry

Mikel Obi talks about his best game as a Chelsea player.
Mikel in action for Stoke City

Speaking on The Obi One Podcast as quoted by Daily Post, the retired Nigerian footballer said he earned his respect by then Chelsea Captain John Terry after his performances in a club friendly game against AC Milan in 2009.

“I think it was in the United States we were playing a friendly game against AC Milan [in 2009] and I was feeling the game. I was getting the ball, I was tearing, I was making the passes, everything was going well and I was getting the ball from the keeper like next to the 18-yard box, I was dribbling past the likes of Ronaldinho,” the former Stoke City midfielder said.

Also read: Mikel Obi Reveals 1 Main Reason He Was Scared Of Meeting Drogba During AFCON Tourneys

“JT [John Terry] came up to me and said, ‘mate I think that’s enough now, you’ve had your turn, play simple now’, and I was thinking why he would say that to me because I was in the zone.”

Mikel Obi and John Terry shared the same locker room at Chelsea.
Mikel Obi and John Terry

He continues, “After the game I came up to him, I was like but why will you say that to me and he said, ‘I was trying to look after you because you do this and you keep doing, it takes one, gets in, goal, and I know you are going to start the season because of the way you’ve been playing in pre-season’”

According to the Nigerian, that season happened to be his best under manager Carlo Ancelotti, as he has enough game time.

“That was probably one of my best seasons under Carlo Ancelotti. Until I got injured I was playing literally every game and that was when we won the double.”

In a related development, Mikel Obi called for the integration of local-based players into the Super Eagles. According to the former Trabzonspor playmaker, the integration will give them an opportunity to showcase their talents.

Based on Mikel’s assertion, it doesn’t matter whether the local-based boys play often, but their experience will widen once they stay in the same camp with more experienced European-based players

John Mikel Obi former Super Eagles player, arguably the most successful Nigerian player.
Mikel Obi

“We need to make sure that we give our local players the chance to be able to go to the national team and showcase their talent and be part of that,” the 2013 AFCON winner told FL.

Also read: Mikel Call For Immediate Integration Of Local Players In The Super Eagles

“Even if they don’t get to play as much, for them to be there, to learn, to grow, it’s very important.”

He added, “We need our local players to be able to express themselves, showcase their talent and to show us that they can be able to play and compete in this kind of tournament (AFCON). So yeah, I’m happy for that.”

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