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7 most disappointing Nigerian youngsters ever

7 most disappointing Nigerian youngsters ever

Kelechi Iheanacho and Alex Iwobi are two youngsters Nigerians place their hopes on to herald a new golden generation for the Super Eagles however there have been many before them who failed to live up to expectations.

While the likes of John Mikel Obi, Nwankwo Kanu, Daniel Amokachi, Jay Jay Okocha and to a lesser extent Taiye Taiwo lived up to their talents, others disappointed their fellow country men.

Here are seven players who failed to live up to their expectations;

1. Femi Opabunmi

Helped Nigeria win silver at the 2001 FIFA U-17 World Cup and was honored with the silver shoe at the event and also won the bronze ball as the third best player in the tournament.

However an eye surgery in 2008 curtailed his career and he is not played professional football since.

7 most disappointing Nigerian youngsters ever

Femi Opabunmi at the 2001 U-17 World Cup

2. Pius Ikedia

Was considered by many to be an age cheat and though he would 15 times for the Super Eagles, many feel they winger could have done more in his career.

The 36 year old played at the 2002 FIFA World Cup and the 2000 Summer Olympics.

7 most disappointing Nigerian youngsters ever

Pius Ikedia

3. Bartholomew Ogbeche

The 32 year old was taken to the 2002 world cup aged 18 and Nigerians thought along with Opabunmi, he would lead Nigeria's next golden generation.

However he was unable to live up to the hype. He has played for mostly Dutch clubs and never established himself at a top club despite appearing for the likes of PSG.

7 most disappointing Nigerian youngsters ever

Ogbeche in action for Cambuur last season

4. Chrisantus Macauley

Probably the most disappointing youngster Nigeria has ever had. His lanky stature led many to consider him a great replacement for the legendary Kanu Nwankwo, while some thought he might be able to fill the big shoes of the Nigerian record goalscorer, Rashidi Yekini.

Shone at the 2007 World U-17 Championships in Korea under the late coach Yemi Tella with seven goals as Nigeria won gold. However it seemed like the reported age cheat was just a scam.

7 most disappointing Nigerian youngsters ever

Chrisantus was another huge disappointment

5. Isaac Promise

Captain fantastic was brilliant for Nigeria at the FIFA U-20 World Youth Championship hosted by the Netherlands and alongside Chelsea's John Obi Mikel and Chinedu Obasi Ogbuke, Nigeria reached the final of the tournament, only to be beaten by a Lionel Messi-inspired Argentina.

Played most of his career in Turkey and many think he faded as he was also an age cheat.

7 most disappointing Nigerian youngsters ever

Issac was captain at the 2007 U-20 World Cup

6. Stanley Okoro

Remember little Messi who was later exposed as a fraud and age cheat? He let Nigerians down as he never managed to reach the feat predicted.

7 most disappointing Nigerian youngsters ever

Stanley Okoro

7. Rabiu Ibrahim

The new Okocha was never close to matching the legendary Jay Jay's record a few years after his breakthrough at the 2007 U-17 FIFA World Cup.

7 most disappointing Nigerian youngsters ever

Ibrahim in action for the Super Eagles

In January 2009, he appeared in Goal.com's list of 10 African Players to Watch, and The Times' Football's Top 50 Rising Stars.

Had a resurgence in the national team under Sunday Oliseh but has so far faded into obscurcity.

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