Former Nigeria player, manager Stephen Keshi dead at 54

Wednesday June 8th, 2016

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Former Nigeria soccer star and manager Stephen Keshi died early Wednesday in Nigeria, the country's soccer federation confirmed. He was 54.

Keshi had a long career for the Super Eagles, making 64 appearances for the national team from 1981–1995. Keshi was part of the Nigeria squad that won the Africa Cup of Nations in 1994, the same year Nigera reached No. 5 in the FIFA World Rankings, the highest-ever ranking for an African team.

After his playing career ended, Keshi eventually entered coaching. He managed Togo and Mali before returning home to Nigeria in 2011. Keshi managed the Super Eagles through 2015, winning another Cup of Nations as manager, making him only one of two people to win the tournament as a player and coach. 

In 2014, Keshi’s Nigeria team made the knockout stage of the World Cup.

Keshi’s wife Kate died last year. He is survived by his four children.

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