How Ugo Ehiogu ‘rejected the call’ to play for Nigeria

How Ugo Ehiogu ‘rejected the call’ to play for Nigeria
April 21
20:24 2017

The footballing world has been in a state of shock, disbelief and sadness since Ugo Ehiogu, former England defender and Tottenham U-23 team coach, died from cardiac arrest in the early hours of Friday.

Ehiogu, who collapsed on Thursday at Tottenham’s training ground, had two long spells at Middlesborough and Aston Villa.

Despite occasional injury concerns, he enjoyed a glittering career which saw him win three Football League Cups.

He was regarded as an efficient centre-back, playing at a high level for many years.

Although born of Nigerian parents, Ehiogu never got to play for the Super Eagles.

When called upon, he rejected the invitation to play for Nigeria.

He was invited in 1992 when Dutchman Clemence Westerhof was the Super Eagles head coach.

Before then, he had played just one game for the England U-23 team and 15 games for the U-21 team.

Several football experts confirmed to TheCable that Ehiogu was invited to play for Nigeria.

Ademola Olajire, the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) media director, said: “Definitely, Ehiogu was once invited to the Eagles but he rejected the call and opted to play for England.”

When contacted, football aficionado, Godwin Dudu-Orumen, said, “Absolutely, yes. Ehiogu was once invited to play for Nigeria.

“In fact, I was the one NFA then mandated to call him because of my connections. I called and told him, but he later did not get back to me.

“He eventually debuted for England in 1996 and he was then with Aston Villa,” Dudu-Orumen added.

Ehigou went on to earn four caps for England’s Three Lions.

Tributes have been pouring in for the late defender who many refer to as a “gentle giant”.

He will be remembered for his charitable nature as he recently spoke of his passion for helping the needy.

His final tweet, which has since gone viral, sums up his ready-to-help attribute.

He wrote: “Gave a homeless girl £10 last night in Dalston. She didn’t ask or beg. Random impulsive act from me. Not gona lie. Felt good. #dosomethingkind.”

Before venturing into a career in coaching, he helped establish a record label, Dirty Hit, after his retirement in 2009.

The label kickstarted the careers of bands like ‘The 1975’, ‘Ben Khan’, ‘Superfood’, ‘Benjamin Francis Leftwich’ and ‘Fossil Collective’.

Ehiogu is survived by his wife, Gemma, and their two children, son Obi Jackson and daughter Jodie.


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Social Comments


  1. jesuo
    jesuo April 22, 18:42

    very very sad honestly. May his soul rest in peace. However, in all british media, no one have mentioned that this guy is from Nigeria. Because he has great archivements. If he had made just one mistake in his life, he will be ”’the man from Nigeria”’ shame

    Reply to this comment
    • tim.
      tim. April 22, 20:28

      Imaging at viewing center today ,where I watched chelsae and Spurs semis nobody knew about him. He would have been one of the Nigerians golden of 1994 ….RIP!

      Reply to this comment
  2. Vicku
    Vicku April 24, 00:05

    May his gentle soul Rip. He was a great man. My condolence to the family. God is your strength.

    Reply to this comment

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