Noah Okafor – The latest Nigerian star to join AC Milan

Noah Okafor – The latest Nigerian star to join AC Milan
Credit: Icon Sport

Discover the illustrious list of Nigerian footballers who have donned the AC Milan jersey, and join us in celebrating the latest addition, Noah Okafor.

Noah Okafor Joins AC Milan

AC Milan has added another illustrious name to its history books with the signing of Swiss forward, Noah Okafor.

AC Milan officially announced the acquisition of the talented player from FC Red Bull Salzburg, Noah Okafor, on a permanent basis, sealing a deal that will keep him in the Rossoneri jersey until 2028.

The news was met with excitement and anticipation from AC Milan fans worldwide, as the club continues to bolster its squad for the upcoming seasons. Noah Okafor's arrival marks a significant moment for the player, who now joins the ranks of esteemed Nigerians to don the AC Milan colors.

The 22-year-old striker's journey to San Siro has been nothing short of impressive. Born to Nigerian parents in Switzerland, Noah Okafor quickly made a name for himself in the football world with his technical prowess and goal-scoring abilities. His performances at FC Red Bull Salzburg caught the attention of AC Milan's scouts, leading to a reported €14 million ($15.5 million) transfer deal. Noah Okafor will wear the number 17 shirt.

AC Milan's official statement on Saturday, July 22, confirmed the signing of Noah Okafor, and the club's management expressed their delight at bringing in such a promising talent.

“Born in Binningen (Switzerland) on 24 May 2000, Noah Okafor developed in the FC Basel youth section and made his professional debut with the club in 2018. He would go on to score seven goals in 54 games with FCB, winning one Swiss Cup title. He then moved to Salzburg in January 2020, where he made 110 appearances and scored 34 goals. He won four Austrian Bundesliga titles and three Austrian Cups with Die Roten Bullen. In international football, Noah has won 14 caps and scored twice for Switzerland.” AC Milan stated in an official statement.

Confirming he’s joined AC Milan, Noah Okafor said;

“AC Milan has always been my dream club. When I was a kid I admired Kaka and Ronaldinho playing in this jersey, and last year I had the great pleasure of playing against them at San Siro, wearing the Salzburg jersey. For us the result was a disaster, but the experience of feeling the power in such a stadium was incredible. I personally experienced this passion of the Rossoneri fans and was enchanted by it. I also scored for AC Milan in the Champions League and later had a conversation Leao.

“Since Milan became interested in me, I asked Rafa for some information and he told me how great and legendary this club is. I can’t wait to meet my new teammates, the Coach, all the staff members, managers and everyone at the club. I always wanted to come to Milan. Now I am here and I can’t wait to feel and absorb all the enthusiasm and passion of the fans. And I want to help Milan write special stories and win. Thank you for allowing me to be here.”

Noah Okafor now finds himself following in the footsteps of other notable Nigerians who have left their mark on AC Milan's history.

In this article, we celebrate the remarkable contributions of some of the Nigerian stars who have worn the iconic Rossoneri jersey.

Nigerian players that played for AC Milan

AC Milan, one of Italy's most prestigious football clubs, has had a long and illustrious history of welcoming talented players from all around the world. Among the many nations that have left their mark on the San Siro pitch, Nigeria stands out as a country that has consistently produced exceptional footballing talents. Over the years, several Nigerian players have played for AC Milan.

Aliyu Datti – The Pioneer Nigerian at AC Milan

Aliyu Datti, the first Nigerian to join AC Milan, arrived in January 1999 after starting his career at Padova. Though his time at Milan was short, he made history for Nigerian players. Limited to just three games without scoring, he later went on loan to Calcio Monza before departing for AC Siena in 2002. Datti's groundbreaking move opened doors for Nigerian talents to shine on the international stage, leaving a lasting legacy in Nigerian football.

Taye Taiwo – The Towering Full-Back

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Credit: Icon Sport

In 2011, Taye Taiwo made his mark at AC Milan as a strong and robust left-back. Known for his thunderous left foot and impressive defensive abilities, Taiwo added depth to Milan's backline during his season-long loan from Marseille. While his time at AC Milan may have been relatively short, his contribution was valued, and he will always be remembered for his fierce left-footed strikes and solid defending.

Nnamdi Oduamadi – The Speedy Winger

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Credit: Icon Sport

A product of AC Milan's youth academy, Nnamdi Oduamadi was a promising talent who rose through the ranks. His blistering pace and goal-scoring ability caught the attention of many fans. While Oduamadi's appearances for the senior team were limited, he gained valuable experience on loan spells to various Italian clubs, showcasing his potential as a talented winger.

Taribo West's Sensational Switch

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Credit: Icon Sport

Taribo West made headlines with his move to Inter Milan in 1997 before creating a stir with a sensational switch to AC Milan in December 1999. His transfer to both Milan clubs cemented his status as a versatile defender in Italian football. However, his time at AC Milan was relatively short-lived. During his tenure, West managed to make just four appearances and scored one goal before departing for FC K’lautern in November 2001. Despite his limited time on the pitch, he remains one of the few players to have featured for both Milan giants.

Kingsley Umunegbu – A Journey of Youth Development and Bittersweet Returns at AC Milan

Kingsley Umunegbu's journey at AC Milan started from their youth system, showcasing the club's commitment to nurturing young talents from different backgrounds. His official debut for Milan came in December 2007, a moment of pride for both the player and his country. Despite being a product of the prestigious youth academy, Umunegbu's opportunities in the senior team were limited, leading to loan spells at various clubs such as Salernitana, Portogruaro, Varese, and Renate.

While Umunegbu's progress was hindered by limited appearances at AC Milan, he did briefly return to fill in the second non-EU spot during the 2011-12 season. It was a bittersweet moment for the player, having come full circle but still unable to secure regular game-time in the league.

Full List of Nigerian Players Who Played for AC Milan

1. Ezekiel Henty: The center-forward had a short stint at AC Milan in January 2014, moving from Spezia Calcio and later joining AC Perugia Calcio.

2. Taye Taiwo: As a defender, Taye Taiwo joined AC Milan from Olympique Marseille in July 2011 and stayed until July 2013 before moving to Bursaspor.

3. Nnamdi Oduamadi: The attacking player made a single appearance for Milan's senior team in July 2010 before heading to Brescia Calcio.

4. Harmony Ikande: Playing in the midfield, Ikande was at AC Milan from June 2010 to August 2011, briefly representing Budapest Honvéd FC afterward.

5. Wilfred Osuji: A midfielder, Osuji had a short period at Milan in July 2009, later joining Varese Calcio.

6. Kingsley Umunegbu: As a second striker, Umunegbu played briefly for Milan from June 2010 to July 2011, featuring in one match before moving to FC Chiasso.

7. Taribo West: A renowned defender, West featured for AC Milan from December 1999 to November 2001, having previously played for Inter Milan. He scored one goal in four appearances for Milan.

8. Aliyu Datti: As a center-forward, Datti represented AC Milan from January 1999 to July 2002, making three appearances before joining ACN Siena.

This article was most recently revised and updated 5 months ago

Rababe Koussaimi, a 22-year-old football journalist, is deeply passionate about the world of sports. The Moroccan journalist channels her enthusiasm into writing and conducting extensive research, creating insightful and engaging content for GoalBallLive readers.