Five most famous Nigerian Footballers to have played in China.
5. Gabriel Melkam
Born in Lagos, the former Flying Eagles left back plied his trade for several German clubs including the likes of SG Wattenscheid, Karlsruher SC, Hansa Rostock and Sportfreunde Siegen before finally heading to Xiamen Lanshi.
He also played for Changchun Yatai, Guangzhou Evergrande and Qingdao Jonoon. In total, he made 180 appearances in China.
4. Yakubu Aiyegbeni
At the 2010 World Cup, Yakubu’s miss shattered the hopes of Super Eagles fans.
After playing for Julius Berger, Gil Vicente, Maccabi Haifa, Hapoel Kfar Saba, Portsmouth, Middlesbrough, Everton, Leicester City and Blackburn Rovers, Yakubu decided to taste something different. He joined Guangzhou R&F in 2012.
His attacking display helped Guangzhou to uplift themselves in the table.
With figures that read 24 goals from 43 games, his conversion rate as a striker made him a feared opponent in the Chinese league.
3. Obafemi Martins
The striker spearheaded Nigeria’s attack in major tournaments. He played for Reggiana, Inter Milan, Newcastle United, VfL Wolfsburg, Rubin Kazan, Birmingham City, Levante and Seattle Sounders FC before joining Shanghai Shenhua in 2006
Despite not being in good shape and with his goals drying up, Obagoal managed to bag 19 goals from 40 games. He is currently at Wuhan Zall.
The striker is still yet to announce his swansong.
2. Aaron Samuel
After playing for Vålerenga and Sarpsborg 08, Aaron Samuel joined Guangzhou R&F in 2014. He contributed 15 goals. Following spells at CSKA Moscow, Amkar Perm and Beitar Jerusalem, he returned to China this time with Sichuan Longfor. The striker scored 19 goals before joining Changchun Yatai. In total, he has hit 38 goals in China.
1. Odion Ighalo
Ighalo has always been an avid maintainer of his numbers in any colour that he donned on.
After belting out three phenomenal seasons at Watford where he went on to score 36 goals from only 90 games, he joined the Changchun Yatai. A short yet a remarkable hostility prevailed between Odion and Changchun Yatai as he played 55 games and scored 36 goals
He then linked up with Shanghai Shenhua where he struck 10 goals in 17 appearances.