Mikel wins Goal Nigeria Player of the Year Award 2013

The midfielder who has become a key leader in the national team in the past few years has been voted the best player for the second year by fans of the website

Chelsea midfielder John Obi Mikel has once again been voted the Goal Nigeria Player of the Year by readers of the website.

Mikel won the title ahead of Vincent Enyeama, Emmanuel Emenike, Victor Moses and Godfrey Oboabona.

The Chelsea man polled 49 per cent of votes cast to win the title for the second time after being voted winner in 2012. He finished ahead of compatriots Enyeama (28.6%), Emenike (13.2%), Moses (6.4%) and Oboabona (2.8%).

A happy Mikel told Goal: “It’s an honour to win this award again and I’m very happy to know that my people, my Nigerian fans, support me and love what I’m doing.”

In a year filled with highlights in which he won the Africa Cup of Nations with Nigeria, scored his first English Premier League goal for Chelsea after eight years and then capped it with 2014 World Cup qualification, Mikel is certainly spoilt for choice with regards to his personal high.

“I think if I had to pick one, I’d say winning the Africa Cup of Nations - that was really big for me and for the country because we’ve waited for almost 20 years to win it again.

“Going into that tournament, I don’t think many people really gave us a chance of winning it but we had the belief that we’ve got a very good team and a very good manager.

“The way the team has changed in the past couple of years, especially with the younger players, we were hungry for success. I think winning the Africa Cup of Nations was the big one for me,” he said.

With a big year ahead as he looks to finally make his World Cup debut after missing South Africa 2010 due to injury, Mikel stated that it will be great to face the big South Americans Argentina, Iran and Bosnia-Herzegovina in Group F and try to make it to the next round.

“You say [the game against Argentina] is the tough one but this is why you play in the World Cup - you want to play big games. You want to play against the likes of Argentina, Spain, Germany, countries like these.

“So coming up against the likes of [Lionel] Messi, [Sergio] Aguero and all those good players is going to be a big test for us but it’s a test that we want to see how well we are doing. If we do well in the Argentina game and get a good result, maybe a draw, and then get two wins against the other two teams, it will hopefully put us through to the next round,” said Mikel.