Victor Nosa Ikpeba – The Undisputed Prince of Monaco

The electrifying Victor Ikpeba began his career at the now defunct African Continental Bank F.C of Lagos, before representing Nigeria U-17 squad that took part in the 1989 FIFA U-17 World Cup held in Scotland. His performance at that tournament convinced football scouts from Belgium to recruit him into modest Belgian club side- RFC Liege. He soon established himself as a clinical finisher after making 79 appearances and scoring 27 goals for the Belgian team.

In 1994 French club- Monaco F.C then coached by the present Arsenal tactician Arsene Wenger snapped gave snapped him up. Victor Ikpeba had the most eventful time of his football career at Monaco, as he helped the French club win the League title. He also got an invitation into the 1996 Atlanta Olympic Soccer squad of Nigeria. The Team eventually won Gold after defeating Argentina in the final.

The icing in the cake of the Delta State born Footballer came in 1997 when he won the African footballer of the year award after a wonderful season with Monaco. He played a total of 169 games and scored 55 goals for the Monaco team. This enviable feat earned him the nickname- «The Prince of Monaco».

After leaving Monaco for Borussia Dortmund in 1999, his career took a nose-dived which eventually became worse in the 2000 after the demise of his young wife- Atinuke through breast cancer. Subsequent efforts to revive his career with Real Betis of Spain, Al-Ittihad of Libya and Charleroi F.C of Belgium did not yield much fruit, as he eventually retired from active football in 2005.

It is pertinent to note that Victor Ikpeba was an integral part of the Super Eagles squad from 1993- 2000. He played a total of 30 matches and scored 3 goals for the Super Eagles of Nigeria in all competitions.

His worst miss came in the African Cup of Nations final jointly co-hosted by Nigeria and Ghana in 2000 when he scored in the penalty shoot-out against Cameroon but thought the ball had not crossed the line. He held his head in disbelieve and the referee and his assistant ruled that it was not a goal. Television replay later showed that the whole of the ball actually crossed the line. Nigeria eventually lost the game.

He was a member of the Super Eagles squad that participated at the 1994 African Nations Cup held in Tunisia as well as the 1994 and 1998 FIFA World Cups held in the United States and Spain respectively. He his presently a sports analyst with South African based Super Sports Channel television.

Esta entrada fue publicada en Sin categoría, Últimas noticias de fútbol sala. Guarda el enlace permanente.