Rashidi Yekini, dubbed the ‘Goalsfather,’ had a global impact on soccer that lives on in the hearts of millions.
His remarkable soccer skills have served as a model for many soccer stars around the world.
As the world remembers the late Rashidi Yekini, the one-time ‘African Footballer of the Year,’ who would have turned 60 today, October 23, 2023, here are 12 facts about him.
(1) He was born in Kaduna State on October 23, 1963, to Yoruba parents from Kwara State.
(2) Yekini began his career as a welder and mechanic before following his dream and joining his first football team, ‘UNTL FC’ in Kaduna.
(3) In 1982, he joined the Shooting Stars, where he remained for two years and scored 45 goals in 53 games.
(4) In 1993, Yekini became the first Nigerian footballer to bag the ‘African Footballer of the Year.’
(5) In 1984, Yekini led the Shooting Stars to the finals of the African Champions Cup.
(6) The late soccer star also played for international clubs in Spain, Tanzania, Saudi Arabia, Tunisia, Greece, Portugal, and Switzerland.
(7) During his stint at Vitória Setbal in Portugal in 1993-94, Yekini won the Bola de Prata (Silver Ball) for being the league’s best scorer. He scored a total of 21 goals.
(8) Yekini helped Nigeria’s national side, the ‘Super Eagles,’ qualify for the 1994 World Cup. He scored the game’s first goal.
(9) He remained with the Super Eagles for over 14 years, making another World Cup appearance in 1998.
(10) During his time with the Super Eagles, Yekini scored 37 goals in 58 games for Nigeria.
(11) He was married to three wives and had three daughters: Yemisi, Omoyemi, and Damilola.
(12) Yekini died in Ibadan, Oyo State, on May 4, 2012, at age 48.