The death of the football legend, Stephen Keshi is no doubt a great loss to Nigeria and football federation at larger. Following the sad news of the passing away of the onetime Super Eagles’ captain and Coach Nigerians and the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) have been expressing their grief over tragedy that befell the Nation via social media.
NFF President Amaju Pinnick described the news as a shock and a hard to bear loss “Keshi was a superhero. His death is a big loss to Nigeria as a nation, not only to Nigeria football.”
A Mr. Babatunde Ogala articulated Keshi as the best of all and a great achiever “Stephen Okechukwu Keshi, you were the best indigenous coach Nigeria ever had, the longest serving captain of the Nigerian National Team, the First to lead Nigeria to the World Cup as a player, captain and a coach. You were the first to win the Nations Cup as a player, captain and a coach. One of the best Central defender Nigeria ever produced. You were a school boy prodigy and product of youth development graduating straight from secondary school to the National Team. You opened the vista of playing as professionals overseas to Nigerian footballers. You were a great player and would remain a legend in Nigerian football. You were unappreciated by some and cherished by the majority of Nigerian soccer followers. Good Night as transit to be a higher realm to be with the Lord. Sleep well as you rest in the bossom of the Lord. Your death is a shocker to us all and a national tragedy. Rest in Peace the “Big Boss”
A close ally of the deceased Bestman Nze-Jumbo in his grief said “with tears in my eyes and a grieving heart I mourn the death of the one who was my inspiration all the while I played soccer. “Even as a striker I wore the number 4 jersey and moulded my movement after him. I hated those that hated him and fought against his enemies.
“His friends became my friends and I saw him as the most iconic person in Nigerian football. He is my hero and mentor when football is mentioned. I weep, I mourn and I sorrow at your departure.
Nze-Jumbo, with heartache rhetorically asked “My dear Keshi why did you have to die now. Rest in peace my Skippo.”
Mr. Kalusha Bwalya wrote on the twitter handle of Nigerian football governing body that “Woke up to the sad news of the passing of my brother Stephen Keshi. I can’t believe it. I am in shock . Football legend. RIP.”
Ayodeji Omotoyin in his tribute message charged individuals to resourceful to the nation “Stephen Keshi did his utmost best for his country as a player and a coach. What have you done for Nigeria?”
Ayodeji also recalled the twitted message of the deceased when he resigned as coach of the Super Eagles “what did Nigeria do for him? Hatred, Unpaid Salary, Unfulfilled Promises. It takes 2 to tango.”
On his own part, Mr. Bamidele Olateju, wrote “great loss… big boss (Keshi) served Nigeria.”
Ladi Balogun in grief of the lost prayed he is granted eternal rest “So Sudden . . . So Sad . . . The big boss takes the final bow! Stephen Okechukwu Keshinro is no more. But we are consoled that he made immense contributions to the greatness of Nigeria. In the spirit of this Holy Month of Ramadan, May God forgives him, grant him eternal rest and give the children he left behind, the fortitude to bear the irreparable loss, amen. Adieu, Stephen Keshinro!”
Former Super Eagles coach and Captain died this morning at just the tender age of 54 former Super Eagles’ captain and Coach, Stephen Keshi has passed away after haven suffered a severe Cardiac arrest.
He had also lost his wife of 35 years, Kate, to cancer in December 2015.
Mr Keshi, popularly called the Big Boss, is the only Nigerian coach to have won the Africa Cup of Nations. He also became the second person in history to win the competition as a player and as a coach after Mahmoud El-Gohary of Egypt when he led the Super Eagles to win the tournament in 2013 in Johannesburg, South Africa.
Stephen Keshi also happens to be the only Nigeria coach that has visited Agama kitchen during his tenure as coach in company of his late wife and Jay Jay Okocha.