Former Nigeria worldwide Yakubu Aiyegbeni announces retirement

Yakubu Aiyegbeni

Former Super Eagles striker, Yakubu Aiyegbeni, has announced his decision to totally retire from playing football at the age of 35.

The Nigerian, who has halted his career four goals short of 100, last featured on the professional stage for then League One side Coventry in February.

The former Portsmouth and Everton forward announced his immediate retirement from playing football on Wednesday.

In nearly a decade in English football, between January 2003 and June 2012, Yakubu scored 114 times in 293 league appearances, mostly in the top flight.

Yakubu scored 95 goals in 252 Premier League games across spells with Portsmouth, Middlesbrough, Everton and Blackburn Rovers, and is the second-highest African goalscorer in England's top flight behind Didier Drogba.

"Firstly, I would like to thank God for the career I have had".

He scored 21 goals in his 57 appearances for the Super Eagles and is now the third highest ever global goalscorer for Nigeria.

The Yak started his professional career in 1997 in Nigeria - playing for Julius Berger but moving Europe to join Israeli club Maccabi Haifa in 1998 - where he spent five seasons. "I feel the time is right for me to now focus on the next chapter in my life." the striker said.

He played with Super Eagles in the Africa Cup of Nations 2002 and 2004 and 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa.

43 appearances, struggled to get back into his super form when he attempted to bounce back for Coventry city early in the year.

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