September 24, 2022

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Okocha recalls ‘special goal’ 29 years after

Nigeria and Bundesliga legend, Austin Okocha, on Saturday recalled with glee his wonder goal against Germany’s famed goalkeeper Oliver Kahn in August 1993.

Okocha stated this during the unveiling of the five-a-side football pitch at the LSDPC Estate, Meiran, Lagos, built by Bundesliga, the top-tier German football league aired exclusively in Nigeria on StarTimes.

Okocha, just a season into his Eintracht Frankfurt career, and still 23, kept fans, teammates and opponents alike dazed, before scoring one of Bundesliga’s most memorable goals ever.

With Frankfurt leading Karlsruher 2-1, the retired mercurial midfielder found himself on the end of a fast counter-attack. Coming face-to-face with Kahn, the Nigerian had the chance to slot in the first time, but Okocha danced around five players, some of them more than once, before beating Kahn in a 3-1 win.

In a chat with journalists, Okocha said he’s remained cordial with the German iconic keeper despite ripping him apart before scoring.

“Well, I’ve seen him (Kahn) after that. We are not enemies; we are all just doing our jobs and I’m delighted I scored that goal. It was a goal that introduced me to Europe and it’s still a special goal.”

The new pitch in Meiran is part of Bundesliga’s programme for global pitch refurbishment activation in support of football, with the event tagged “Common Ground.”

Okocha noted that the facility would “keep the youths away from trouble” and promised to visit the pitch “from time to time.”

Public Relations Manager, StarTimes, Lazarus Ibeabuchi, said the pitch was one of many developmental projects that the Pay TV was in partnership with.

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“StarTimes realises the huge potential Nigeria has to offer the world. Thus, as media partners and exclusive broadcasters of Bundesliga in Nigeria, we are committed to seeing the next Okocha emerge. We also want to see that all Nigerians can afford to enjoy their favourite sports at home. Thus, we have made our football offerings very affordable for all,” Ibeabuchi said.