Augustine Azuka “Jay-Jay” Okocha is a former Nigerian international football player who used to feature prominently during the 1990s and 2000s. He played as an attacking midfielder and is regarded as one of the best ever Nigerian footballers. Okocha was named by Pele in March 2004 as one of the 125 greatest living footballers and is renowned for his dribbling skill.
Ja-Jay Okocha started his career at Nigerian powerhouse Enugu Rangers and then moved to German third division side Borussia Neunkirchen. In 1992 he signed for another German club Eintracht Frankfurt and played for them until 1996. He featured in 90 league matches and scored 16 goals. He then moved to Turkish powerhouse Fenerbahce in 1996 after Eintracht got relegated to the German second division. He played for Fener for two seasons and scored 30 goals in 63 league matches. It was while at Fenerbahce that Okocha became a Turkish citizen.
Jay-Jay Okocha was signed by French giants Paris St-Germain for $24 million, making him the most expensive African footballer. In four seasons he played for PSG, he scored twelve goals in 84 league matches. He was signed by Bolton Wanderers in the summer of 2002 on a free transfer. He went onto very successful at the English club and became a hero to the club’s fans. He scored 14 goals in 124 league matches between 2002 and 2006. He was also the captain of Bolton later on.
Jay-Jay Okocha played for Qatar SC for the 2006-2007 season and returned to English football and played the 2007-2008 season for Hull City. He could play only 18 league matches for Hull and at the end of the 2007-2008 decided to retire from football altogether.
Jay-Jay Okocha made his international debut for Nigeria in May 1993 against Ivory Coast in a 2-1 victory in a 1994 World Cup qualifier. He went onto play in 75 international matches for his nation and scored 14 goals. Okocha represented his nation at the 1994 African Cup of Nations and the 1994 World Cup finals. He won the Olympic gold in 1996 and featured at the 1998 World Cup finals as well as at the 2002 World Cup finals. He also played at the 2000 and 2004 African Cups of Nations.