By Alec Nathan
BREAKING: Former Eagles
Coach, Stephen Keshi, dies at
Nigerian football icon Stephen Okechukwu
Chinedu Keshi has died.
Stephen Keshi, a former Nigerian soccer star and
head coach of the country’s national team, died
Wednesday at the age of 54.
The Nigeria Football
Federation confirmed the news on Twitter.
According to ESPNFC.com , Keshi died of cardiac
Keshi occupies a special place in African soccer
lore. According to Nigerian newspaper the Cable,
Keshi is one of just two people in history to win
the Africa Cup of Nations as a player and a coach.
The other is Mahmoud El-Gohary of Egypt, who
died in 2012.
A standout defender, Keshi was a guiding force on
Nigeria’s national team throughout his prime. One
of the seminal moments of his playing career
came in 1994 when he helped lead the Super
Eagles to their second Africa Cup of Nations
title. Nineteen years later, Keshi coached Nigeria
to its third Africa Cup of Nations championship
with a 1-0 triumph over Burkina Faso.
In 2014, Keshi guided Nigeria out of Group F play
at the World Cup and into the knockout rounds for
the first time since 1998. According to BBC.com ,
“The achievement also made Keshi the first
African coach to lead the Super Eagles past the
Before Keshi served as Nigeria’s head coach, he
briefly held down posts as the head coach of both
Togo and Mali’s national teams.
According to FIFA.com , Keshi tallied 20 wins, nine
draws and eight losses as a coach in all FIFA
tournaments. All told, he made 64 career
appearances for the Super Eagles from
1981-1995, per Sports Illustrated .