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5 greatest Nigerian teenage superstars in history


/ by Imhons Erons
After taking a long, cursory look at Nigeria’s football in the last half century, SoccerNet Nigeria’s Imhons Erons counts down the 5 greatest Nigerian teenage superstars in history. So who are the best U-20 wonderkids to ever play for Nigeria? Scroll down to find out!!!
#1 Celestine Babayaro 
15-year-old Babayaro was a key member of the victorious Nigerian team at the Under-17 World Championships in Japan (1993), and in just two years he made his international senior debut in the Afro-Asian Championship. He was already an Olympics gold medal winner at age 17, even making the tournament's all-star team. Already a teenage sensation in Belgium with Anderlecht, Babayaro switched to Chelsea in England for a club record paid for a teenager at the time. At Chelsea, he won the UEFA Cup Winners' Cup, the UEFA Super Cup and the FA Cup.
 #2 Vincent Enyeama
Vincent won the Nigeria Premier League in 2001 as a fresh-faced teenager and went on to win two more league titles as well as two African Champions League honours, all with Enyimba International of Aba. 
Weeks before he turned 20, Enyeama was selected for the 2002 FIFA World Cup as a cover for Ike Shorunmu. He made his competitive debut in that tournament, keeping a clean sheet against England in the third group match.
He is Nigeria’s most capped player of all time, ending a distinguished international career with 101 caps.
#3 Sunday Oliseh
A physical and very technical defensive midfielder even at a young age, Sunday Oliseh made the move to Europe when he was just 16 years old and had become a household name in Belgium before he turned 20. When many boys his age were having their first dates and first kisses, Oliseh was playing his way into the hearts of millions of Nigerians by helping the Super Eagles win the 1994 AFCON. He would go on to play for more illustrious clubs in Europe like Ajax, Juventus and Borussia Dortmund and also captain the Super Eagles.
#4 Henry Nwosu
Considered to be one of the most gifted midfielder to ever adorn the National team’s green and white jersey, Henry Nwosu, aged just 17, was the youngest member of Nigeria's victorious 1980 African Nations Cup squad. Later that year, he also scored Nigeria’s only goal at the Olympic Games. Before then, he had been an enfant terrible in the Nigerian League playing for New Nigeria Bank (NNB) and terrorizing much older defenders.
Nwosu had played in two editions of the AFCON before he celebrated his 20th birthday and would feature at two more before hanging his playing boots in 1991.
#5 Kanu Nwankwo
After a title-winning performance at the U-17 World Championships, Nwankwo Kanu was signed by Dutch Eredivisie AFC Ajax in 1993. He made his Ajax debut the following year aged just 18 and went on to score 25 goals in 54 appearances. Kanu won the Champions League as a 19 year old and just a few days before turning 20, he captained the Nigerian team that won gold at the Olympics.
Kanu went on to secure legendary status at Arsenal and West Brom and also captained the senior national team, the Super Eagles.

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