Obinna playing for Lokomotiv Moscow in 2011
|Full name||Victor Nsofor Obinna|
|Date of birth||25 March 1987|
|Place of birth||Jos, Nigeria|
|Height||1.80 m (5 ft 11 in)|
|2009–2010||→ Málaga (loan)||26||(4)|
|2010–2011||→ West Ham United (loan)||25||(3)|
|2014||→ Chievo (loan)||10||(2)|
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 16:04, 8 May 2016 (UTC).
Obinna in Igbo, literally means "father's heart". He played for Chievo in Italy's Serie B, having played regularly in Serie A with the club until their relegation in 2007. He made his full international debut for Nigeria at the 2006 African Cup of Nations, scoring once in three appearances as his side were eliminated in the semi-finals.
Obinna celebrates by doing a cartwheel-to-two-hand aided backflips-to-backflip somersault.
Obinna played for Nigerian clubs Plateau United and Kwara United,, he went on trials with Italian clubs Internazionale, Perugia and Juventus before signing with Brazilian club Internacional, but international clearance problems meant that the transfer was never finalised. He rejoined Enyimba to take part in their domestic league campaign and CAF Champions League defence.
Obinna was signed by Italian club Chievo on a five-year contract in July 2005. But also reported that Chievo formed an agreement with Internazionale that Obinna first registered as Chievo player in order to use the non-EU registration quota of Chievo, like Júlio César in the 2004–05 season. Then he would be call back to Inter.
In his first season with Chievo, Obinna scored six goals in 26 games, including a goal on his Serie A debut against Parma in a 1–0 win, 11 September 2005. In the first months of the 2006 season, Obinna was suspended for having signed a contract with both Internacional and Chievo in 2005. Chievo were relegated at the end of the 2006–07 season, casting some doubt over Obinna's future; the club choosing to keep Obinna in the squad to help gain promotion back to Serie A.
On 4 October 2007, Obinna was involved in a car accident on his way home from training in which he swerved away from a vehicle that had tried to overtake him around a bend. He escaped with only a few cuts and bruises. The car flipped several times and was heavily damaged. He lost consciousness and was taken to hospital. The accident occurred only a few hundred yards away from where former Chievo player Jason Mayélé was killed in a car accident in 2002.
In the summer of 2008, Obinna moved back to Inter for a €1.2 million transfer fee in a three-year contract. English club Everton attempted to immediately sign him on loan, but were unable to secure a work permit for the player. Obinna's first goal for Inter came on 19 October in a 4–0 win over Roma. Internazionale coach José Mourinho described Obinna as one of Inter's best talents for the future.
On 26 August 2009, Spanish La Liga side Málaga signed Obinna on a season-long loan. He scored his first goal for the Andalusian club on 4 October in 1–1 a draw against Xerez, a match in which he was also sent off.
West Ham United
On 27 August 2010, Obinna signed for West Ham United on a season-long loan with the option of a permanent deal in 2011. He made his debut for West Ham on 11 September in a 3–1 home defeat to Chelsea. He scored his first goal for West Ham in a 2–1 win against Sunderland in the third round of the League Cup at the Stadium of Light on 21 September 2010. He scored his first league goal in 3–1 win against Wigan Athletic on 27 November 2010. He continued the fine form with four assists in a 4–0 win against Manchester United on 30 November 2010, automatically booking a first League Cup semi-final for 20 years.
Obinna was sent off during West Ham's semi-final, first leg match on 11 January 2011 against Birmingham City for an off the ball challenge on Sebastian Larsson with West Ham having conceded an equaliser just minutes earlier. On 30 January, Obinna scored a hat-trick in a FA Cup 4th round tie against Nottingham Forest, leading West Ham to a 3–2 victory. He followed that up three days later with two goals as West Ham beat Blackpool 3–1 at Bloomfield Road.
Obinna was a member of the U-20 Flying Eagles that won the gold in Benin in the African Youth Tournament in 2005 he was called up to the Nigerian senior squad at the 2006 African Cup of Nations, scoring once before his side's semifinal elimination.
In August 2008, he was named amongst Nigeria's squad for the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing. Obinna scored Nigeria's first goal in a 2–1 win against Japan the "Dream Team IV" winning goal in the final group match against the United States, ensuring that Nigeria qualified for the quarter-finals. Nigeria were drawn against Ivory Coast who they beat 2–0, with Obinna scoring a penalty and setting up Peter Odemwingie for the other goal. He later captained the Nigerian team when they beat Belgium 4–1 in the semi-final match, before losing to Argentina in the final.
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- "Obinna treble fells Forest". Sky Sports. 30 January 2011. Retrieved 31 January 2011.
- "Blackpool 1–3 West Ham". BBC Sport. 2 February 2011. Retrieved 3 February 2011.
- "Obinna signs for Locomotiv Moscow". 19 June 2011. Retrieved 19 June 2011.
- "Локомотив" подписал контракт с Обинной [Lokomotiv has signed a contract with Obinna]. FC Lokomotiv Moscow (in Russian). 20 June 2011. Retrieved 20 June 2011.
- "Zebras verstärken sich mit Stürmer: Victor Obinna kommt!" (in German). msv-duisburg.de. 9 September 2015.
- "Lilien nehmen Obinna unter Vertrag" (in German). sv98.de. 5 August 2016.
- "Obinna spurs Nigeria revival". FIFA.com. 10 August 2008. Retrieved 23 August 2010.
- Obinna: Written in the stars FIFA.com, 20 August 2008
- "Dream Team" face up to criticism BBC Sport, 14 August 2008
- "Olympics: Nigeria eliminates U.S. 2–1, advance to quarterfinals". NAIJANET.COM. 13 August 2008. Retrieved 24 September 2010.
- Nigeria 2–0 Ivory Coast: Odemwingie stars ESPN Soccernet, 16 August 2008
- Slick Nigeria crush sorry Belgium BBC Sport, 19 August 2008
- Argentina keeps Olympic gold in men’s soccer FT.com, 23 August 2008
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