‘Messi Is A Genius’: Yobo Picks Barcelona Star Over Ronaldo

A file photo combination of Juventus star, Cristiano Ronaldo and Barcelona playmaker, Lionel Messi.
A file photo combination of Juventus star, Cristiano Ronaldo, and Barcelona playmaker, Lionel Messi.


Former Super Eagles skipper, Joseph Yobo says he prefers Barcelona star, Lionel Messi over Cristiano Ronaldo, describing the Argentine as a “genius.”

Ronaldo and Messi, who have been one of football’s greatest rivals for over a decade, faced off in the Spanish La Liga between 2009 and 2018.

Either of the two has won eleven out of the last twelve Ballon D’or awards, with fans and pundits alike divided on who is the greater.

And Yobo who is the Assistant Coach of the Super Eagles is pitching his tenth with Messi whom he said never left people in doubt as to his potentials when he started playing the game.

The former Everton man spoke on Monday in an Instagram live chat with Channels TV, saying the 2005 U-20 World Cup winner is naturally talented.

While Ronaldo is a great footballer who has over the years trained himself to become one of the best in the game, Yobo said he would pick Messi ahead of the former Manchester United forward.

“I have played against him [Messi] a couple of times and knew that he was one player who could become invisible when he was there,” he said. “Ronaldo, we have to also give him credit because he built himself to who he is today. I played against him in England; he wasn’t the Ronaldo of today.

“But Messi, people have seen his talent from when he came on board. So, he is a special player. Messi, basically, is a genius. He is just a genius.”

Yobo added that he fears that it would take many years before a footballer like Messi emerges, stressing also that the game won’t remain the same when the duo retire.

He said: “I don’t know if in football we would see another player like Messi in many years to come. I hope so. Another fear that I have is: when Messi and Ronaldo leave the stage, what happens to football?”

While admitting that Ronaldo and Messi are “unique players,” he restated that he “will pick Messi” over the Portugal captain.

Why I Accepted Super Eagles Coaching Job – Yobo


Former Everton defender Joseph Yobo has described his role as the assistant coach of the Super Eagles as a national call.

He also said giving back to society is what he enjoys doing and sees the Eagles job as an opportunity to serve the country.

Yobo was named as the assistant coach of the three-time African champions on February 12th, 2020, by the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF).

The former Fernerbache man told Channels TV’s Sports This Morning that it was not an easy decision for him to take up the job but admitted that he saw it as a chance to give back to the country.

READ ALSO: NPFL: Jigawa Golden Stars Battle Plateau United As Matchday 22 Begins

A file photo of former Super Eagles captain, Joseph Yobo. Photo: Twitter- @thenff

According to the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) winner, he initially felt the time was not right for him to go into coaching but noted that his passion for football made him change his mind.

“It has been an exciting moment for me. It was not an easy decision to make,” Yobo explained.

He admitted that “It is not a lane that I was ready to go into immediately because I don’t think the environment was ready for me but for the passion and the love I have for the game.”

Also, he revealed that coaching is “what I have always wanted to do inside of me” but he never talked about it with anyone.

Yobo said that “having served as an ex-player and captain for many years, that was another avenue to give back.

“So, it was almost like a national call to serve again. And I looked at this opportunity and I said, you know what, I have to give it a go and be able to give back again to the people; give back my knowledge and my service to my nation.”

The Nigerian who retired from international football in 2014 after making his debut for the Super Eagles in 2001, attributed his stay in the national team to hard work and the grace of God.

“I will say I am blessed. I am thankful to God for the privilege to be able to showcase my talent,” he said.

“Playing for the national team is not easy. And to be that consistent for many years is only by the grace of God and hard work.”

Furthermore, he said he wants to help the younger generation, adding that “What I enjoy doing is giving back. And that’s all I can give to the younger generation.”

Joseph Yobo Appointed Super Eagles’ Assistant Coach

A file photo of former Super Eagles captain, Joseph Yobo. Photo: Twitter- @thenff



The Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) has appointed former Super Eagles defender and captain Joseph Yobo as assistant coach of the team.

Yobo will replace Imama Amapakabo in the technical crew of the senior men’s national team.

He played for the Nigeria U-20 team, the Flying Eagles – during the FIFA World Youth Championship (now known as FIFA U20 World Cup) in 1999.

The attack-minded defender won his first cap for the senior team in an Africa Cup of Nations qualifying match away to Zambia in Chingola in April 2001 and played in three FIFA World Cup finals in 2002, 2010 and 2014.

He also played in six Africa Cup of Nations finals – 2002, 2004, 2006, 2008, 2010 and 2013, capping it with leading the Super Eagles to their third continental title in South Africa in 2013.

Yobo played a total of 100 matches for Nigeria at the senior level.

He is a thoroughbred and dedicated professional who played his club football in five countries, including sterling appearances for Olympique Marseille in the French top flight, Fenerbahce in Turkey and Everton FC in the English Premiership.

The 39-year-old scored several crucial goals for the Super Eagles in important qualifying matches for the FIFA World Cup and the Africa Cup of Nations.

He was also among the scorers when the Eagles thrashed South Africa’s Bafana Bafana 4-0 in a group phase match in Tunisia 16 years ago.

Born Joseph Michael Yobo on September 6, 1980, the flamboyant stopper also played club football in Belgium with Standard Liege, Tenerife in Spain and Norwich City in England, having started out with Michellin-Harcourt in Rivers State in 1996.

Baptist, X-Planter In Quarter-Finals As Yobo Makes Surprise Visit

Baptist, X-Planter In Quarter-Finals As Yobo Makes Surprise Visit


Baptist Primary School from Osun State have qualified for the quarter-finals of the Channels International Kids Cup.

The young lads joined LGEA Central Primary School from Kwara in the next round of the tournament after both sides played out a 2-2 draw in their final Group A game on Wednesday at the Teslim Balogun Stadium in Lagos.

PHOTOS: Yobo Graces Channels Kids Cup With Surprise Visit

In the other Group A match, Sheikh Gumi Model School from Kaduna beat Arinze Primary School of Edo 1-0 for their first win of the competition, but it was not enough to book a last-eight spot as they finished third with four points.

In Group B, Obukohwo Demonstration Primary School managed to beat Ecole Urbiane Centre from Benin Republic 1-0 to advance to the quarter-finals.

Elsewhere, Emmanuel Anglican and Premier Primary schools have also progressed to the next round following their respective 2-1 and 1-1 scorelines in their last Group C games.

X-Planter Primary School of Lagos and New Tunga Primary School from Niger completed the quarter-finals line up after playing a goalless draw and 1-0 respectively in Group D.

Meanwhile, former captain of the Super Eagles Joseph Yobo paid a surprise visit to the boys to encourage those who qualified for the next round and cheer up other teams who crashed out.

Yobo, who assured the young lads of his support, stressed the need for them not to be carried away with their football talents but to take their education seriously.

He noted that he rose to stardom just like some of them, adding that he never took his studies for granted.

The former Eagles captain further thanked Channels Television for organising the competition, saying it would go a long way in developing sports at the grassroots.

See the Channels International Kids Cup table below:

GROUP A               P             W           D             L              GD          Pts

Kwara                   3              2              1              0              +4           7

Osun                     3              1              2              0              +1           5

Kaduna                3              1              1              1              -1            4

Edo                        3              0              0              3              -4            0


GROUP B              P             W           D             L              GD          Pts

Oke-Ifako            2              1              1              0              +1           4

Delta                    2              1              1              0              +1           4

Benin Rep.          2              0              0              2              -2            0

Ogun                    –              –              –              –              –              –


Group C                P             W           D             L              GD          Pts

Ekiti                     3              2              0              1              +2           6

Anambra            3              1              2              0              +1           5

Katsina                3              0              2              1              -1            2

Borno                   3              0              2              1              -2            2


Group D               P             W            D             L              GD          Pts

X-Planter            3              1              2              0              +1           5

Niger                   3              1              1              1              0              4

Ghana                 3              0              3              0              0              3

Oyo                       3              0              2              1              -1            2

Yobo Graces Channels Kids Cup With Surprise Visit

Yobo Graces Channels Kids Cup With Surprise Visit
Joseph Yobo with the Borno team


The Channels International Kids Cup continued for the third day on Wednesday with an unexpected visit by former Super Eagles Captain, Joseph Yobo.

Yobo’s visit to the Teslim Balogun Stadium, Lagos, the venue of the tournament was a boost to the players and their coaches who received him warmly.

READ ALSOBaptist, X-Planter In Quarter-Finals As Yobo Makes Surprise Visit

Despite crashing out of the competition, some of the young lads whose schools could not qualify for the quarter-finals put their worries behind to welcome Yobo who asked them not to take their education with levity.

See photos below;

Calabar Tragedy: Kanu To Organize All-Star Football Match For Victims

Nwankwo Kanu

Nigeria and Arsenal football legend Nwankwo Kanu, has indicated interest in organizing an All-Star Football Match to raise money for victims of the unfortunate Calabar viewing centre incident, that claimed lives last week Thursday in Nyaghassang Community and also develop the community.

The former Presidential Adviser and Bakassi leader, Senator Florence Ita-Giwa said, Yobo and other football stars have also indicated interest on coming to the state to work together and achieve a set goal for the community.

Ita-Giwa disclosed this to reporters in Calabar, the Cross River state capital after leading a candle light procession and prayer session on Thursday night, to commemorate one week of the incident, said the soccer stars would be working with other colleagues to organize the match.

Over a thousand members of the Nyaghassang Community wearing black T-shirts inscribed with “Rest In Peace Dear Football Enthusiasts” gathered to pay their last respect to the deceased.

Ita-Giwa, who led the procession exercise with other women on behalf of Concerned Mothers of the Efik Kingdom, had earlier promised to build a standard football-viewing centre for the community.

Ita-Giwa said, “I had reached out to someone like Kanu Nwankwo, who is so sympathetic. In fact, he is talking about an All-Stars Football Match to raise money to come and develop this community, and he is serious about it. Kanu has promised.

“I have spoken to Joseph Yobo, and he is ready to also collaborate with Kanu so that they can bring their colleagues.

“Such a profound incident to happen to a community like this is not something we should be quiet and just let pass.

“In civilized communities, when people die for such a cause, you come out to remember that day. You come out to commiserate with the people. You come out to create activities that would commemorate that day that this thing happened.

“We thought that for innocent people to come and die like that for something they were passionate about, which is football, we should come out and remember that day that it happened and we are overwhelmed by the turnout today.

“We have to start showing love to each other. We have to show compassion for each other.”

Mikel, Musa Confirmed For Joseph Yobo Testimonial

Joseph Yobo, Ahmed Musa, Mikel ObiSuper Eagles’ captain, John Mikel Obi and his assistant, Ahmed Musa have been allowed to be part of the Joseph Yobo testimonial game planned for May 27 in Port Harcourt, Rivers State.

The Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) ordered that the players should be excused from the two friendly matches in Europe so that they can honour Joseph Yobo, who is having his testimonial game on the same date as the friendlies.

Nigeria will play Mali in Rouen, France on May 27 and then take on Luxembourg in Luxembourg on June 1.

Meanwhile, Coach Salisu Yusuf has invited Morocco–based midfielder Babatunde Michael to join the squad for the two friendly matches.

African football stars like Samuel Eto’o, Yaya Toure, Alex Song and former Everton coach David Moyes have all reportedly agreed to be part of the testimonial game.

Joseph Yobo is a former Nigerian professional footballer who played as a centre back. He was the captain of the Nigerian Super Eagles until his international football retirement in June 2014, as Nigeria’s record appearance holder.


South Africa Friendly: 4 Dropped From Super Eagles Squad

Super EaglesInterim Super Eagles Coach, Daniel Amokachi, has named a 23-man roster for the upcoming international friendly against South Africa in Nelspruit on Sunday.

Four players plying their trade in the Nigerian league – Chidiebere Eze, Mfon Udoh, Ubong Ekpai and Onyekachi Okoye – would not be on the flight to South Africa.

An analysis of the roster revealed that 2 goalkeepers, 7 defenders, 8 midfielders and 6 strikers have a chance of earning further international caps in the tie against Bafana Bafana.

The former African champions are already in South Africa for the encounter.

The Super Eagles of Nigeria continued their abysmal performances by losing 1-0 at home to the Cranes of Uganda in the first of their two matches during the March international friendly window.

The East African side, considered the better in the match, scored in the 80th minute when Faruku Miya’s close range shot from the edge of the box, took a deflection off new boy, Akeem Latifu and sailed into the net.

The late goal turned out to be the party spoiler for Eagles’ Captain, Vincent Enyeama, who was celebrating his 100th cap for the Eagles. He later pulled out of the South Africa game due to injury sustained during the Uganda loss.

Cranes of Uganda Shock Super Eagles In Uyo

EaglesThe Super Eagles of Nigeria have continued their abysmal performances and this time losing 1-0 at home to the Cranes of Uganda in an international friendly.

The East African side, considered the better in the match, scored in the 80th minute when Faruku Miya’s close range shot from the edge of the box, took a deflection off new boy, Akeem Latifu and sailed into the net.

The late goal turned out to be the party spoiler for Eagles’ Captain, Vincent Enyeama, who was celebrating his 100th cap for the Eagles with the game.

Efforts by the 32 year old Lille goalkeeper to prevent the goal was futile as he was only able to parry the ball into his own net.

Enyeama is the second Nigerian after retired former Everton defender, Joseph Yobo, to make 100 appearances for the Super Eagles.

Both teams agreed to the friendly as part of preparation for the AFCON 2017 qualifiers starting in June.

Although the Super Eagles team was largely made up of new invitees, the loss would have further dampened the spirit of soccer loving Nigerians as the loss puts Uganda ahead of Nigeria in a head-to-head.

The Ugandans were ranked 71 in the world.

The Eagles leave for Nel­spruit, South Africa on Thursday where they will face the Bafana Bafana in another friendly match on Sunday.

Jonathan Promises Special Funds For Sports If Re-elected

Jonathan sportsThe President of Nigeria, Goodluck Jonathan, has promised that the fire brigade approach to sporting events by Nigerian sportsmen and women will be a thing of the past if re-elected for a second term as special funds will be set aside to cater for the sector.

President Jonathan, while addressing the sportsmen and women after a jogging exercise on Saturday, at the Eagle Square in Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), promised them that a special fund would be set aside for preparations to sport events to create room for winning of more laurels.

The jogging exercise which was organised to emphasize the need for fitness also had in participation, the Vice President of Nigeria, Namadi Sambo, Senate President of Nigeria, David Mark, Minister of Sports, Tammy Danagogo, Director General of the Sports Commission, Gbenga Elegbeleye.

The exercise was also joined by a group of sportsmen and women in Nigeria including former Super Eagles captains Kanu Nwankwo and Joseph Yobo, other athletes and footballers including members of the Super Falcons.

The whole team joined the President to jog round the Eagle Square, acknowledging cheers from the supporters who gathered to witness the event.

The President also said a special fund would be set aside to cater for Nigerian sportsmen and women who want to further their education, extending the privilege to those who may sustain injuries while representing the country in any sporting event.

While describing sports especially football as a unifying factor in the country, he promised that any sportsman or woman who made the country proud will never be a beggar.

According to the President, such funds must be set aside while the private sector would be allowed to manage it for sports development in Nigeria.

Danagogo said the harvest of medals in Nigeria must be allowed to continue, David Mark put his own to question and Sambo said the return of the President can only be possible with the PVC in their hands.

President Jonathan To Lead Physical Training Exercise In Abuja

Jonathan President Goodluck Jonathan will on Saturday lead government officials as well as sports men and women to an out-door physical training exercise in Abuja, which is aimed at promoting sports and fitness in Nigeria.

The programme, which includes jogging, physical stretches and light aerobics will start at 7.00am with a long walk from the Presidential Villa by the President in the company of government officials, presidential aides, political associates, sports personalities and enthusiasts.

According to a statement by the Special Adviser on Media and Publicity to the President, Dr. Reuben Abati, the training will culminate in a solidarity rally for President Jonathan at the Eagle Square, organized by the Nigerian sports community.

Sports personalities expected to participate in the physical training exercise and solidarity rally include Mary Onyali, Austin Eguavoen, Kanu Nwankwo, Joseph Yobo and Chika Chukwumerije, amongst others.

Joseph Yobo Endorses Jonathan For Second Term

Joseph YoboFormer Super Eagles Captain, Joseph Yobo, has identified President Goodluck Jonathan as a president who has done well for the Nigerian youths and should be given a second chance to accomplish what he has in stock for the youths.

Yobo was in the Presidential Villa with an organisation he called “PDP Ward To Ward Initiative” to hold a meeting with President Goodluck Jonathan.

After the meeting, he spoke to State House correspondents on what the initiative was all about.

According to Joseph Yobo, the transformation agenda of the Jonathan administration has given the Nigerian youths power and belief in oneself and this cannot be ignored.

He said that the future is for the Nigerian youths and that everyone of them should stand up and defend their votes during the February 2015 presidential elections.

Joseph Yobo is a Nigerian professional footballer who plays as a centre back. He was the captain of the Nigerian senior national team until his international football retirement in June 2014. He is also Nigeria’s record appearance holder.