Growing up it was hard watching live football games except for major tournaments like the World Cup. So the pages of newspapers, news on radio or television were the outlets we got gist of how players fared or results of games. We occasionally get to see highlights of games of weeks past.
It would be hard for some football fans to know who Finidi George is, remember I said some football fans. He played for Ajax Amsterdam in The Netherlands along with Nwankwo Kanu aka Papilo winning the 1995 Champions League under the tutelage of Louis Van Gaal and 7 or more other trophies during his 3 year spell at the club.
Finidi George aka Finito was part of the Super Eagles team that won the 1994 Nations Cup in Tunisia for Nigeria and also a member of the U.S ’94 World Cup squad for the country. His goal in the 1:1 draw against Algeria in the final Group A tie got Nigeria a slot at the 1994 World Cup.
He was once regarded as the best number 7 in the world and indeed the best winger in world football.
For me after Rashidi Yekini, Finidi George has to be the best ever Nigerian footballer. A true professional and a gentleman, he played for Calabar Rovers, Iwuanyanwu Nationale, Sharks (all in Nigeria) Ajax (The Netherlands), Real Betis (Spain), Mallorca (Spain) and Ipswich (England).
His former team Ajax celebrated him in style with some of his then teammates and manager wishing him well. It was one of the best things I saw today.
Happy 50th birthday to the legend Finidi George.