Taribo West turns 50: Here are 5 things to know about the Super Eagles legend

Taribo West turns 50: Here are 5 things to know about the Super Eagles legend
Credit: Icon Sport

Super Eagles legend Taribo West clocks 50 years of age today 26 March 2024, and he's been celebrated across the social media space by his clubs, fans and many Nigerians.

Known for his unusual and colourful hairstyles during his playing days, West is being showered with loads of congratulatory messages.

He was congratulated on X by Inter Milan, Union of European Football Association (UEFA), Super Eagles, the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) and many others.

In the spirit of celebrating the special occasion, here are five things you should know about the former Inter Milan player.

Five things to know about Taribo West

Taribo West in action for Nigeria
Taribo WEST (NIGERIA) during the 2002 FIFA World Cup match between Argentina and Nigeria in Kashima stadium, Japan. Credit: Icon Sport.

Taribo West is an Olympic Gold winner

After joining the Flying Eagles at the 1993 African Youth Championship, Taribo West was a member of the Dream Team that won the 1996 Summer Olympics Gold medal in Atlanta.

Alongside other Nigerian legends like Sunday Oliseh, Kanu Nwankwo and Austin Jay-Jay Okocha, West played every single minute of the tournament as the Super Eagles conquered Argentina in the finals.

Taribo West is a church founder

After his playing career, West went on to found a church called “Shelter in the Storm Miracle Ministries of All Nation” in Lagos.

According West, his decision to become a devout Christian and a pastor was because appeared to him “one-on-one”.

Taribo West is a Europa League winner

Taribo is one of the few Nigerian footballers who have won European titles.

He won the Europa League (then UEFA Cup) with Italian Serie A side Inter Milan during the 1997/98 season.

Taribo West in action for Inter Milan
TARIBO WEST during the match between AC Milan v Inter in Serie A, 1999. Credit: Icon Sport.

Taribo West's career lasted for 19 years

West started playing professionally with Obanta United in 1989. He played for now defunct Sharks of Port Harcourt, for Enugu Rangers and for Julius Berger in the beginning days of his career in Nigeria.

In Europe, he played for Auxerre, Inter Milan, AC Milan, Derby County, FC Kaiserslautern, Partizan, and Plymouth.

And in 2008, he hung his boots after a one-year spell with Paykan in Tehran, Iran. He made a total of 169 appearances and scored four goals across his spell in Europe and Asia.

Taribo West admitted to using “charms” before matches during his playing days

The defender admittedly used charms before games during his professional career as a footballer.

In an interview sometime in 2015, West said: “In my playing days, when I was ignorant (not a good Christian), I used to get some mallams and babalawos (traditional doctors) to make charms for us, which we took to (national) camp. Sometimes it worked, sometimes it didn’t.”

This article was most recently revised and updated 3 weeks ago

Joseph is a graduate engineer turned sports writer, he has covered lots of sports stories, match previews and predictions across various leagues on the planet.