Super Eagles

Mikel was never a good defensive or offensive midfielder – Oliseh

Sunday Oliseh has said former Super Eagles captain John Mikel Obi was never a good defensive midfielder or an offensive midfielder.

John Mikel Obi who is one of Nigeria’s most decorated players played as a defensive midfielder at club level but as an offensive midfielder with the national team.

The former Chelsea midfielder is regarded as one of the best defensive midfielders during his playing days at Chelsea where he won many trophies.

Also when tasked with the duties of the offensive role with the national team he excelled – Mikel Obi led Nigeria to the 2013 AFCON title and two World Cups.

But Sunday Oliseh is adamant that Mikel Obi was never a good offensive midfielder as he lacked certain characteristics.

Sunday Oliseh called Mikel Obi a useful defensive midfielder, saying he would play Wilfred Ndidi instead of the former Chelsea midfielder.

“He’s a player who’s done some good with Chelsea. But when you talk about playing as an offensive midfielder, he’s not an offensive midfielder.

“My man here knows I’m blunt to say certain things.

“Offensive midfielders have certain qualities and he doesn’t have any of them. As regards a defensive midfielder, I think he’s useful but I won’t play him.

“I’ll play Ndidi because a defensive midfielder’s work is- you have to win balls without making fouls, you have to be very good at aerial balls. You have to have some control by helping others,” Oliseh said.

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