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John Obi Mikel Changes His Name After Nigeria Mistake 13 Years Ago

Chelsea fans are no strangers to multiple monikers given
their recent history of Brazilian talents, but it’s not often
that an established Stamford Bridge star makes an
official name change midway through their career.

Mikel was born John Michael Nchekwube Obinna (the son
of Michael Obi) in 1987, but a mistake in 2003 changed
things for the midfielder.
During the registration process for the 2003 Fifa Under-17
World Championships, the Nigeria Football Association
mistakenly submitted ‘Michael’ as ‘Mikel’ for the
tournament in Finland.
The competition ended in disappointment as Nigeria failed
to qualify from their group despite Mikel scoring during a
win against Australia, but the midfielder decided to keep
his new name.
The Chelsea midfielder says the mistake had a “special
ring to it,” and from joining Chelsea in 2006 he went by
‘Mikel John Obi’ instead of ‘John Obi Mikel.’
And the midfielder has now decided to officially change
his full name to Mikel John Obi.
But Chelsea fans need not worry about their new 2016/17
replica shirts need not worry as ‘Mikel/12’ will stay on the
Mikel will miss the start of the new Premier League
season, instead representing Nigeria at the Rio 2016
Olympics as one of the Super Eagles’ three designated
over-23 players.
The midfielder has won two Premier League titles, the
Champions League, the Europa League and four FA Cups
at Stamford Bridge, as well as lifting the Africa Cup of
Nations in his 75-cap Nigeria career.

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