What comes to your mind when asked about who the best football player of the Super Eagles is?
How about us generalize the question to the best Nigerian baller of all time? Naijauto.com hopes that you are also thinking about Jay Jay Okocha- one of the most prominent African players who have tested themselves in the most arduous leagues in Europe.
Today, let’s dive in the life of the Nigerian pride and find out Jay Jay Okocha net worth, cars and career highlights.
Jay-Jay Okocha is one of the best African footballers the history
I. Who is Jay Jay Okocha?
“Jay-Jay – so good they named him twice” is what a fan of Bolton Wanderer calls his beloved player. Before his move to the Premier League club, Jay Jay had gained his reputation as one of the most skillful players in Europe playing for Borussia Neunkirchen, Eintracht Frankfurt, Fenerbahce, and Paris Saint-Germain.
For his time playing for the Istanbul club Fenerbahce, Okocha was admitted Turkish citizenship under the name Muhammet Yavuz, so he has a dual nationality.
Augustine Azuka "Jay-Jay" Okocha was born to Enugu parents on 14 August 1973 (Now 46), having retired from proffessional football but his mark on the sports remains in the minds of true football fans for his dribbling skills and adept techniques that brought him to many awards of his time.
He has scored many memorable goals in his career
II. History of Okocha - Where his name comes from?
The name Jay-Jay actually did not root from his parents but his elder brother named James who made football known to Okocha. He played carrying the name Emma Jay-jay on his back. Unfortunately, his brother James passed away and this pain had always haunted Okocha in every step of his football career, so the then-young Nigerian footballer adopted this name to soothe the wound.
- Apart from his deceased brother, Jay-Jay also has another family member playing professional football; he is Alex Iwobi who is the new hope of Arsenal F.C.
- Though born in Enugu, he spent more time living in Anioma.
Okocha and his nephew Iwobi
III. Okocha football career
Interviewed by BBC Sport, Jay-Jay cracked his secret of his skill that was nurtured from his very young age, playing with anything he thought it could quench his thirst for playing football.
"As far as I can remember, we used to play with anything, with any round thing we could find, and whenever we managed to get hold of a ball, that was a bonus! I mean it was amazing!"
1. Enugu Rangers
It embarked on a career in football in 1990, joining Enugu Rangers, yielding excellent performances in the clubs and attracted the eyes of bigger clubs.
2. Eintracht Frankfurt
In December 1991, he was lined up for the Eintracht Frankfurt and started his professional football in Eintracht Frankfurt in Bundesliga. Here he joined other reputable African players like Thomas Doll and Tony Yeboah. He went on the play for the German club till 1995 the time that he was involved in an unresolvable feud with the current coach of the club Jupp Heynckes.
His next destination was Fenerbahce, one of the most decorated clubs in Turkey, dedicating 62 appearances with 30 goals for the club in 2 season.
4. Paris Saint-Germain
He then departed for Paris Saint-Germain in 1998, having the French side break the record of the most expensive African footballer at that time with a contract worth of about £14 million.
Okocha used to play alongside Ronaldinho at PSG
5. Bolton Wanderers
After the 2020 FIFA World Cup hosted by Japan and Korea, Okocha made a move to Bolton Wanderers, an English club in the Premiere Leaugem, gaining applause of Bolton fans who tributed him with the team printing shirts reading "Jay-Jay – so good they named him twice". His first season at the club saw him struggled with multiple injuries; however, with 7 goals, he hailed Bolton from the relegation and stayed at the highest English division. He attained the caption’s armband in the second season after Guðni Bergsson's retirement, leading the team to the final match of the 2004 Football League Cup and got defeated by Middlesbrough FC.
Jay-Jay – so good they named him twice
Speculations of him moving to play in the Middle Ease arose, which didn’t make the club happy and strip off his captaincy. Jay Jay Okocha later moved to Qatar in 2006. Spending a year there, he moved to the final club, Hull City, helping the team to get the promotion to the Premiere League for the first time in the club’s history.
6. International career
He made his debut for Nigeria in the 1994 FIFA World Cup Qualifier campaign, playing the first 2-1 loss to Ivory Coast in May 1993 but the team still advance to the biggest playground of world sports the next year.
Okocha was involved in the successful tournament of Nigeria in the 1994 African Cup of Nations which the squad became the champions while failing to qualify for the quarter-finals after the defeat of that year’s runners-ups Italy.
Jay-Jay helped Nigeria to win the 1994 African Cup of Nations
He went on to attain more success with the Nigerian squad, winning the first place at the Atlanta Games in 1996.
His next as well as final big cup he joined as a member of the Nigeria National Football Club was the 2000 African Cup of Nations.
IV. Best of Okocha goals
Throughout his career as a professional footballer, Okocha has been known for his skills that allowed the man to dribble through the most tenacious opponents and paralyze the whole defending systems. But people also remind of him as great goals for his clubs that placed him in many awards ceremonies’ tables including one against one of the best goalkeeper Oliver Kahn in 1993.
His most memorable goal might be the one against the famous Nigerian goalkeeper William Okpara who at that time was playing for BCC Lions. This goal indirectedly steered people’s attention towards the young middlefielder.
Greatest goal by Okocha
To me personally, his greatest goal was not from the pitch but off the pitch when he joined his friend Numa to the training of the friend’s training ground of Borussia Neunkirchen and dared ask to join the training with other players, which developed the interest from the Neunkirchen coach who later tried to offer him a contract. The impression he made that day was the premise for his decorated career in Germany as well as his journey in Europe.
During his time in Eintracht Frankfurt, Jay-Jay scored a gonzalo against Karlsuher SC, making all Karlsuher defenders clowns before steering the ball over Oliver Kahn’s reach. The goal against one of the greatest goalkeeper of all time helped Okocha earn many votes for the 1993 Goal of the Year by many famous football magazines.
In the 2020 African Cup of Nations, Okacho score thrice, two of them in the first game of the tournament against Tunisia, for which he received a standing ovation by almost 60 thousand attendance when the Nigerian middlefielder lefts the field.
In his debut season in 2008 with Bolton, Jay-Jay has delivered a class performance against West Ham United to win the vital match of the Premiere League season. The goal was voted the team Goal of the Season.
Video: Jay Jay Okocha ,More Than Just A Trickster
Okocha's individual awards and nominations
- Goal of the Year (Germany): 1993
- Nigerian Footballer of the Year: 1995, 1997, 2000, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005; runner-up: 1996
- African Footballer of the Year runner-up: 1998
- FIFA World Cup All-Star Team (Reserve): 1998
- BBC African Footballer of the Year: 2003, 2004
- BBC Goal of the Month: April 2003
- Premier League Player of the Month: November 2003
- African Cup of Nations Golden Boot: 2004
- African Cup of Nations Best Player: 2004
- Bolton Wanderers Player of the Year: 2004–05
V. Jj Okocha net worth
After having it all at football, Jay-Jay had earned himself a great fortune that enabled the man to invest more in his life. He chose to a businessman, the owner of the Jay Jay Okocha Group West Africa Limited featuring in fields such as distribution of electronics, sales, road construction, and property development, etc.
He was reported to have a hold of $150 million in 2015; however, reports in 2017 revealed the number had been diminished to only $15 million. Such a downfall.
VI. Jay Jay Okocha and family
1. Jj Okocha’s wife
Though his business is encountering problems, his wife, Nkechi Okocha, has always been beside the famous footballer. She, along with raising the children together, also caters to his business and events her husbands are going to join.
They have been known to be one of the best couples in the Nigerian football.
Jay-Jay is now happy with a his wife and two children
2. Jj Okocha’s children
The couple has 2 children, a daughter and a son. While daughter Daniella is very active on social media, son Ajay only appears in his father’s posts among which they had in the stadium watching football. Might he follow his father’s steps?
His daughter is a pretty girl who loves social media
He is engraving the love for football in his son Ajay
VII. Jay Jay Okocha’s house and cars
As a tycoon, Jay-Jay has got a hold of a great fortune. Rumors of his houses across Nigeria are many but the former footballer always keeps it a mystery. On the flipside, Okocha loves posting photos of his vehicles. Especially, on his wife’ 40th birthday, he even wowed her with a car present and this occasion was reportedly worth about N28 million.
Though posting photos of himself alongside supercars, he rarely shares photos of his private accomodation
The poor performance of his business can't steel his smiles
Because he always has a wonderful wife by his side
“Jay-Jay – so good they named him twice” is not only a big name in the Nigerian football, being a great example of the Nigerian youth who dare push themselves to chances and make it on their own. Though he is not a player who had it all at the club level like Didier Drogba or played for many European giants like Samuel Eto’o, the Nigerian legend deserves a place in the hall of greatest African footballers of all time.
Naijauto.com hopes this article has given interesting information around Jay Jay Okocha net worth, cars, family, and career highlights.
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