Kanu, Taribo and the Best Nigerians That Played for Inter Milan As Akinsanmiro Makes Senior Debut

Kanu, Taribo and the Best Nigerians That Played for Inter Milan As Akinsanmiro Makes Senior Debut

Ero Samson
updated at February 26, 2024 at 5:09 PM
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  • The Giuseppe Meazza has become a good stomping ground for Nigerian players in recent years
  • Midfielder, Ebenezer Akinsanmiro, became the latest Nigerian to don the colours of the Nerazzurri
  • Sports Brief takes a look at the best Nigerian players to have represented Inter in recent history

The illustrious list of Nigerians who have graced the ranks of Italian Serie A powerhouse, Inter Milan, grew longer when 19-year-old, Ebenezer Akinsanmiro, entered the field as a second-half substitute for Davide Frattessi against Lecce.

Formerly with Remo Stars, Akinsanmiro joined the Serie A leaders in January 2023 and had been a key figure in the club's U19 squad, netting five goals in 34 appearances.

Inter Milan, Nigeria, Super Eagles, Ebenezer Akinsanmiro, Kanu, Taribo
Ebenezer Akinsanmiro controls the ball during the Italian Serie A match between Lecce and Inter Milan. Image: Carlo Hermann.
Source: Getty Images

His brief appearance for the 2023 Coppa Italia winners ensured he became the sixth Nigerian to don the Nerazzurri colours in recent years. In light of his debut for Simeone Inzaghi's side, Sports Brief reflects on the list of Nigerian talents to have donned the Nerazzurri jersey.

Nigerians who played for Inter

Nwankwo Kanu

The former Super Eagles captain was the first Nigerian to play for Inter, following his €4.2 million transfer from Ajax in the summer of 1996.

Regrettably, Kanu's tenure with the Italian powerhouse was cut short after a mere 12 appearances, after it was confirmed he had suffered a severe heart defect. The Olympic gold medalist underwent aortic valve surgery, sidelining him until April 1997.

Taribo West

The 49-year-old, who is famously remembered for his vibrant hairstyles, became the second Nigerian to play for Inter after he completed a transfer from French Ligue 1 side, Auxerre, in the summer of 1997.

During his three-year stint with the club, Taribo featured in over 40 matches and played a pivotal role in securing the prestigious 1998 UEFA Europa League title, despite being sent off in the final.

However, after he found playing time a little difficult to come by at the Meazza, the tenacious defender made a move to city rivals, AC Milan.

Obafemi Martins

The 39-year-old holds the record for the most appearances by a Nigerian at the Serie A club. Martins donned the black and blue jersey from 2001 to 2006, scoring 49 goals in 88 appearances for the Nerrazurri. He won the Serie A crown, two Coppa Italia, and the Supercoppa Italia in 2005.

The pacy forward was sold in the summer of 2006 to make way for the arrival of Hernan Crespo and Zlatan Ibrahimovic.

Obiora Nwankwo

The 32-year-old completed a transfer to the Serie A giant from Eco Club in the summer of 2010. However, he failed to make an impact at the club, managing only four substitute appearances. The defensive midfielder was then sold to league rivals Parma in a deal reported to be in the region of ₤300,000.

Victor Moses

The skilful winger joined Inter under the management of Antonio Conte in the winter transfer window of 2020.

The Super Eagles star made his club debut as a second-half substitute, replacing Antonio Candreva in a thrilling home victory over Fiorentina in the Coppa Italia quarter-finals. Moses followed up with his league debut just days later, contributing to another triumph against Udinese.

The 2013 AFCON winner would go on to make 20 appearances for the Nerazzurri until the end of his loan spell.

Nigeria-eligible players for clash vs Argentina

Sports Brief in another report outlined a list of players that Super Eagles coach, Jose Peseiro, could consider inviting for Nigeria's clash against Argentina.

Among the potential call-ups were several Premier League stars, including Luton Town's Elijah Adebayo.

Ero Samson photo
Ero Samson
Samson Ero is a sports journalist with a track record of over five years in the Nigerian media industry. He graduated from Nigerian Institute of Journalism (2021-2023).