John Obi Mikel: 'I thought I was going to lose my dad'

John Obi Mikel: 'I thought I was going to lose my dad'

John Obi Mikel has revealed he was faced with the challenge of never seeing his father ever again after coming off the pitch in Nigeria's 2-1 2018 World Cup defeat to Argentina.

The 31-year-old was said to have been asked to pay a ransom of N10 million (about £21,000) following the abduction of his father the second time.

Before going into the last group game against the south American side, Mikel thought he would 'probably find out they had decided to shoot him'.

The former Chelsea midfielder knew about the situation while he was on his way to the St Petersburg Stadium for the game against Argentina.

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But decided not to tell anyone what was happening as he wanted the players to focus on the game.

John Obi Mikel has revealed he was faced with the challenge of never seeing his father ever again after coming off the pitch in Nigeria's 2-1 2018 World Cup defeat to Argentina.

The 31-year-old was said to have been asked to pay a ransom of N10 million (about £21,000) following the abduction of his father the second time., I thought he was going to be shot because of the demands and stuff," he told BBC World Service's Sportsworld.

"They said they would shoot him and in the back of my head during the game I thought that after the match I would probably find out they had decided to shoot him.

"It's life. It's made me stronger as a person. I can look at so many things and say 'this is not going to shake me because I've been through worse'.

"I just hope that it never happens again and my dad can enjoy the rest of his life in peace."

He continued: "It was difficult for me. When I heard that it had happened it was heartbreaking for me, especially with the timing. I knew it would be traumatic for my dad.

"I didn't say anything to anyone in the national team because I was the captain and I had to lead. It was my responsibility to lead the team and I wasn't going to say I couldn't play or have them thinking about my dad rather than the football. I took it on myself and held it in.

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"It stayed in my head during the game and you could see afterwards how I felt."

Similar ordeal happened to another Super Eagles star Samuel Kalu as his mother was kidnapped in the south-eastern city of Abia earlier this month.

And the current Middlesbrough midfielder believes the authorities have to ensure they prevent such occurrence from happening again.

Mikel said: "I called Samuel when his mother was kidnapped and gave him my advice as someone who has been through it twice.

"I knew how he would be feeling. I was glad when his mother was released because you don't want anyone going through that.

"I suppose these things happen every day with different families and obviously we want to see the authorities take more responsibility, but Nigeria is a very crowded place and you can't manage the security.

"You go out and you don't know if you will come back. The government need to look into it and they can do more."

Legit.ng earlier reported that John Obi Mikel has revealed that he played for Nigeria against Argentina at the Russia 2018 World Cup with the information of his dad being kidnapped.

The former Chelsea star added that he could not tell anyone because the abductors warned him that his father would be killed immediately authorities know about the incident.

Mikel stressed that he was in a devastating mood when the kidnappers called him four hours into the Group D tie between Nigeria and Argentina which the Super Eagles lost 1-2.

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Source: Legit.ng

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