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I Didn't Win The Balon D'Or Because I Played For Nigeria— Emmanuel Amuneke

Emmanuel Amuneke, former Super Eagles left winger, revealed at the launching of the LaLiga Nigerian office in Lagos State, that he could not win the Ballon d'Or because he was a Nigerian player.

Emmanuel Amuneke

"I usually tell some of my friends that if I had started my football career as a European player, maybe, I would have won the World Footballer of the year award.
Unfortunately, I started from Nigeria and only God knows why,” he said this in the unveiling event at Radisson Blu Hotel in GRA, Ikeja.

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Amuneke, who won the African Footballer of the year title in 1994, after Nigeria won the African Nations Cup hosted in Tunisia in 1994, was bought by Barcelona in 1996, for $3.6 million.

He is delighted at this new innovation.
"We have to make good use of this opportunity to develop our football. One thing is for people to have dream and another is to have plans. Dream without plan is just an illusion,” he said.

The LaLiga office in Nigeria is aimed at drawing fans closer to their clubs and to generate more awareness. Javier Del Rio, a LaLiga delegate emphasizes this more.

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“We are very proud to be in Nigeria, and to be much closer to the fans.
We believe Nigeria is a significant market for the growth of our brand, and we are highly committed to the development of football in this country, paying close attention to its grassroots football as demonstrated through the five-day LaLiga-NPFL Coaching Clinic for Nigerian youth coaches earlier this year at the National Stadium in Abuja.
"We plan to host more of these type of activations, and this is just the beginning of greater things to come between LaLiga and Nigeria,” he said.

Also present at the event were Finidi George and Mutiu Adepoju, with Adepoju expressing his joy regarding this new achievement.

He said;
"As the LaLiga ambassador, growing the LaLiga brand in Nigeria has always been my primary objective.

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“I am excited about the prospect of Nigerian fans being closer to LaLiga and its clubs, as there is an array of Nigerian talent plying their trade in the Spanish top flight.
I believe that LaLiga's presence in Nigeria will ultimately further strengthen ties between Nigeria and LaLiga."