Former Super Eagles of Nigeria captain, John Mikel Obi has had his contract with Kuwait Sporting Club terminated just after he signed a contract with the club four months ago.
The former Chelsea midfielder, 34, joined Kuwait SC from Stoke City in the summer transfer window, but the middle-east club have now announced that his contract has been terminated. Mikel had initially signed a one-year extension with Stoke before terminating his contract to join Kuwait SC.
The Brigadiers took to their social media account to announce the immediate termination of Mikel’s contract.
“Termination of the contract of the Nigerian John Obi Mikel.” A tweet issued by Kuwait SC simply read.
Although the reasons for the termination are yet unknown, there is a rumour that Mikel Obi had his contract with Kuwait SC terminated in a bid to join Antonio Conte at Tottenham.
According to a report by Nigerian sports media outlet, Team Nigeria UK (@teamnigeriauk3), Antonio Conte has put a call through to both Victor Moses and Mikel Obi in a bid to bring them back to Premier League with Tottenham Hotspur.
However, the media outlet noted that the story has not been verified yet.
“So it was rumoured that Conte has put a call through to both Victor Moses and Mikel Obi in a bid to bring them back to Premier League with Tottenham Hotspur.
We don’t know how true this story is but looking at the new development with Mikel Obi’s big money spinning contract termination by his Kuwait club could be a sign of Conte’s touch.” Team Nigeria UK wrote.
It could be recalled that earlier this year in March, Mikel spoke out about how manager Antonio Conte ended his career at Chelsea because he chose to represent Nigeria at the 2016 Olympics.
Mikel Obi, who stayed at Chelsea for 11 years after arriving as a teenager in 2005, said he had the opportunity to represent Nigeria at the 2016 Rio Olympics but was warned by Conte who had just arrived at Stamford Bridge in 2016, that he would not be part of his plans if he decides to represent Nigeria at the Olympics.
Mikel, said he snubbed Conte’s threats and went to the Rio Olympics, helping Nigeria win a bronze medal and in the process, permanently damaging his relationship with the Italian coach.
“I had been called up by my national team to play and it was a dream. It’s a dream for anyone to go to the Olympics. Yes, as players we want to win the Champions League and the World Cup, but the Olympics is a massive tournament.
This guy [Conte] who has just walked in the door for five minutes is telling me I had to choose. He was saying, ‘If you do that, you won’t be a part of this team’. I spoke to the club and told them that I wanted to go. The club respected me because of what I had done for them and how long I’d been there.
So off I went and I felt punished for that. I came back and I didn’t make the squad. I was never in the squad list on matchdays again.
The funny thing is, just before the January window was going to start, he came up to me and said ‘I want a meeting with you’. This was after making me train on my own for months, treating a player who had been at Chelsea for a long time like this!
When he tried to meet with me he was like, ‘Let’s try and make up, I will need you in the team, let’s squash this, blah, blah, blah!’. I was like, ‘Are you joking?! Are you f*cking serious?!’ He knew I wanted out. I stood up and walked out of the room. You can’t disrespect a human being like that.
I couldn’t wait for the window to open to get out. I was talking to the hierarchy and explaining that I would definitely have to go. They agreed, they understood.” Mikel had told The Athletic early this year.
Mikel, who spent 11 years with Chelsea made 249 Premier League appearances for Chelsea. He won the Champions League and Europa League, two Premier Leagues, three FA Cups, and the League Cup during his time with the London club.
The midfielder won 89 caps for Nigeria, played in two World Cups, and helped the Super Eagles win the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations, before announcing his retirement from international football two years ago.