The Nigerian midfielder was a key member of the Super Eagles squad that conquered the continent nearly ten years ago
Former Nigeria international Ogenyi Eddy Onazi has confessed that winning the Coppa Italia with Lazio and the Africa Cup of Nations with the Super Eagles are the most beautiful moments of his playing career.
Onazi will remember 2013 for the rest of his life.
The My People academy product made his breakthrough at Lazio during the 2012-2013 season after helping the Golden Eaglets finish as runners-up at the 2009 FIFA U-17 World Cup.
And at the end of his first full season with the Lazio first team, Onazi became an Italian champion as I Biancocelesti beat fierce city rivals Roma in the final to lift the TIM Cup.
Barely three months earlier, Onazi had been crowned an African champion.
The tireless tackler was an ever-present in the Super Eagles team that defeated Burkina Faso in the 2013 Afcon final to lift Nigeria’s third continental trophy.
Onazi would later win the Turkish Cup in 2020 with Trabzonspor, but the former Denizlispor ace holds close to his heart the medals he won with Lazio and Nigeria.
What has been said
Ogenyi Onazi is back in Italy playing for Serie D side Casertana.
And in an interview he granted Lazio, as per Since1900, The 29-year-old relieved his best times with the club and his fatherland.
Onazi said: “I’m back home here at the Formello Sports Center. I wanted to go back to Italy to play because I feel good here. I hope to win the championship with Casertana.
“I can’t forget 26 May 2013, an important triumph for us and the fans. Just after the final, I had to join my national team, so I was forced to leave through a secondary door of the restaurant where we were celebrating.
“Supporters always write to me about that match and the goal against Napoli at the San Paolo. They are unforgettable moments in my heart.
“I dreamed of winning the African Cup, and I succeeded. I also hoped to win the Scudetto; we came close. I still managed to participate in the World Cup with my national team.
“At Lazio, I scored several beautiful goals, like the one against Inter at the San Siro.
“The Lazio fans are the best I’ve met in my career; they still show me their affection today.”
Onazi represented Nigeria at the 2014 and 2018 FIFA World Cup in Brazil and France, respectively.