Nwankwo Kanu is a Nigerian International footballer. In 1992, during the African U-20 youth Championship held in Mauritius, he was rejected because he was too tiny. The hunger to succeed made him to work hard, and this eventually paid off, as he was invited to feature in the U-17 World Cup in 1993 in Japan as Captain and he won Gold.
The abundant talent he possesses has seen him play in top clubs in Europe, including- Ajax Amsterdam of Holland, Inter Milan of Italy, Arsenal of England, West Bromwich Albion of England and Portsmouth Fc of England where he now plies his trade.
He later went to Olympic Games in Atlanta in 1996 where he again won gold but was then diagnosed with a heart defect. When others cave on on him, he bounced back to the game that bought him fame and fortune.
One of the things that have set Nwankwo Kanu apart is the burning desire to win. This was evident in the array of medals and trophy he has won in his long illustrious career.
Till date, he is the most decorated Africa player on planet earth. In case anyone is in doubt, the following medals and honor will erase all doubts.
- 1993 FIFA U-17 World Youth Championship
- Gold Medal at the 1996 Atlanta Olympics Soccer events
- 2007-2008 FA Cup winner with Portsmouth FC England
- Three Trophies with Arsenal FC of England from 1999 to 2004
- 1997-1998 UEFA Cup Winner with Inter Milan of Italy
- Four Trophies with Ajax FC of Holland from 1993 to 1996
- 1992-1993 Premier League Winner with Iwuyananwu Nationale of Owerri
- Twice African Footballer of the year in 1996 and 1999
- BBC African footballer of the year in 1997 and 1999
Indeed Nwankwo Kanu is a living legend who has never ceased to amused soccer pundits who thinks he should have hung his booth after going through so many trials in his career. Notable among them was the discovery of a heart ailment in 1996 immediately after he led the Nigerian Dream team one to capture Gold at Atlanta Olympics soccer events. He returned to active football in April 1997 even stronger and determined. It was the height of bravery and strong faith in God
To illustrate how big his heart was, Kanu Nwankwo in July 31st 2000, set up a heart foundation for the treatment of less privileged children diagnosed with heart related disease. So far the foundation has successfully enriched more than 3,000 children. He is previously the Nigeria Goodwill Ambassador to the United Nations Children's Fund. He is happily married to Amarachi and they are blessed with two wonderful sons.