Posted by: westafricanfootball | 06/11/2010


The observant supporters of African football have probably noticed the name Ayo Saka the last couple of months. The talented attacking midfielder has been included in the squads of the Super Eagles – the national football team of Nigeria – both in August, September and October 2010. Saka, a key player for Ocean Boys FC, a rather modest club in the Nigerian Premier League, has been hailed as one of the finest central midfielders in local Nigerian football. The Super Eagles has obviously missed a playmaker since Jay-Jay Okocha retired from international football back in 2006, and based on his performances so far in 2010, some experts actually believe that Ayo Saka could be the solution to this problem.

There is not much information to be found about Ayo Saka but I personally think some information is better than none information. The first time I noticed Saka was in December 2008, when he was included in the squad of the Flying Eagles – the national U-20 football team of Nigeria. Based on the other players that were part of this squad, Saka is most likely born in 1989, 1990 or 1991. At this point, during the season 2008-2009, Saka was part of second division side Union Bank FC. Saka signed for Ocean Boys FC before the season 2009-2010 and was an instant success story. I can document that he scored two league goals during the season, but it is likely that he scored another 1-3 goals. As already written his performances eventually made him a fringe player for the Super Eagles and Ayo Saka made his full international debut for Nigeria against South Korea in a friendly match on 11.08.2010. Saka was actually a substitute for Eneji Otekpa of Enyimba FC, another red hot central midfielder in the Nigerian Premier League. Saka and Otekpa will interestingly battle each other tomorrow afternoon when Ocean Boys FC plays Enyimba FC in their first game of the Nigerian Premier League 2010-2011.

The full name of Ayo Saka is Ayo Ajani Saka. Some sources have actually stated that Ayo Saka played for Heartland FC when he was included in the Nigeria-squads, which is obviously a mistake.

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