The former Super Eagles forward announced his retirement from football on his 35th birthday.
The ‘YAK’, as he was fondly called made a total of 250 play appearances, and scored 96 goals. 57 of his appearances were for the Nigerian national team from 2000 to 2012 with 21 goals to his name.
He began his senior career in 1996 at Julius Berger, before he joined Gil Vivente on loan in 1998. Yakubu has played for Maccabi Haifa, Hapoel Kfar Saba, Portsmouth, Middlesbrough, Everton, Leicester City, Blackburn, Rovers Al-Rayyan, Guangzhou R&F, Reading, Kayserispor, and Coventry City in 2017.
His performance in the 2002/2003 season which saw him score seven goals in eight European Cup appearances, including a hat-trick against Olympiakos and a penalty in the 3–0 win against Manchester United, introduced the player to the world.
“I would like to officially announce my retirement from professional football today,” Yakubu told Sky Sports News.
“Firstly, I would like to thank God for the career I have had. I would like to thank the entire Nigerian Football Federation and my Nigerian national team-mates for all the memorable years I had playing for the Super Eagles.”
Yakubu Aiyegbeni continued, “I would also like to thank all the football clubs I played for. The managers, all club staff, owners, fellow players and my dearest family and friends who immensely supported me throughout my career. When I started my career at Julius Berger in Nigeria all those years ago (1997) I could only have dreamt of the success that was to follow years after.”
“Also playing in England especially helped me grow as a player and as a person so much that I am now settled here. I feel the time is right for me to now focus on the next chapter in my life.” He added.
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