Daniel Owefin Amokachi (born 30 December 1972 in Kaduna) is a Nigerian former professional footballer of Idoma descent and former assistant manager of the Nigeria national football team.
As a player he was a striker from 1989 until 2005, starting his career with Ranchers Bees before earning notability by playing outside his native country with Premier League side Everton, as well as Club Brugge and Beşiktaş before initially finishing his career in the United States with Major League Soccer club Colorado Rapids. He returned to Nigeria in 2005 to briefly play for Nasarawa United, who he went on to manage before moving on to Enyimba. He had his second spell as assistant manager of Nigeria after that. Amokachi is currently the manager of Finnish 2nd division side JS Hercules for the season 2016.
Amokachi, nicknamed "The Bull" was discovered while playing for Ranchers Bee by Nigerian national team coach Clemens Westerhof, who brought the talented player to the 1990 African Nations Cup, and soon Amokachi moved to play for Club Brugge in Belgium. He competed in the new format of the Champions League, and became the first player to score in the competition, after his goal secured a 1–0 win in the opening match in the group stage against CSKA Moscow. Performing well in Belgium and at the 1994 World Cup, Everton became interested in Amokachi and their manager Mike Walker signed him for a fee of £3,000,000 ($4,700,000).
He went on to win the FA Cup with Everton in 1995, famously infuriating manager Joe Royle by bringing himself on as a substitute then proceeding to score two goals in the semi-final against Tottenham Hotspur. He appeared in the final only briefly, late on, as a substitute but is remembered fondly for his beret wearing celebrations.
He remained at Everton until the end of the 1995–96 season, when he was transferred to Beşiktaş of Turkey for a fee of £1.75million. He had failed to make the impact at Goodison Park that many fans had been hoping for, and had been unable to win a regular place in the first team, as Paul Rideout and Duncan Ferguson were firmly established as Everton's two strikers at this stage. He did, however, stand in for Ferguson while he spent six weeks in prison during the autumn of 1995 for an offence committed in Scotland 18 months earlier.
Olympic medal record
Competitor for Nigeria
Gold medal – first place 1996 Atlanta Team Competition
He played many international matches for Nigeria, and was part of the team that participated in the 1994 FIFA World Cup and 1998 FIFA World Cup and won the 1994 African Nations Cup. He also helped win the Olympic gold medal in 1996, scoring in the Gold Medal game itself against Argentina.
Amokachi sustained an injury just ahead of the 1998 FIFA World Cup, played one game, but struggled with knee problems thereafter. After leaving Beşiktaş in 1999, his playing career more or less ended. He signed with 1860 Munich, but the contract was cancelled after he failed a medical test. In turn he was rejected by Tranmere Rovers for the same reason. Amokachi trained with French second division side US Créteil, but the deal was hampered by injuries. American MLS team Colorado Rapids signed him in 2002, but seeing as he was not fit enough they released him before a single match was played. He went to play in the United Arab Emirates, but was denied again due to his medical condition.
Amokachi managed Nigerian club Nasarawa United F.C. and later Enyimba Aba. In April 2007 he quit his role as assistant coach of the Nigeria national team. On 10 April 2008 Amokachi was re-appointed to Nigeria's national team, the Super Eagles, as assistant coach to Shuaibu Amodu, also being assistant manager to Stephen Keshi.
About Article Author
Francisca (Viv) has over 10+ years of writing experience in press releases, feature articles, promotions, copywriting for small businesses and manufacturers in various industries. She brings a wealth of experience and is the "calmer" when these is a storm. She loves to travel and read.View More Articles