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Mikel Obi completes Stoke City switch

John Mikel Obi

Former Super Eagles captain, John Obi Mikel has completed his switch to Stoke City in the English Championship, becoming the club’s fourth signing of the summer.

The former Chelsea midfielder joins Morgan Fox, James Chester and Steven Fletcher at the Bet365 Stadium ahead of the 2020/21 Championship season.

Mikel, who won a host of domestic and European honours during a glittering 11-year stay at Chelsea, returns to English football after a spell in the Turkish Super Lig with Trabzonspor.

Stoke City manager Michael O’Neill said: “We’re delighted to bring John to the Club. His playing career speaks for itself and underlines his calibre as a player.

“I was really impressed with him when we met for the first time and he outlined what he wants from the next phase of his career.

“We spent four hours talking and he made it clear he wants to get back into the Premier League and finish his career there and hopefully he can do that with Stoke City,” O’Neill added.

Speaking to Stoke City+, the 33-year-old said: “It’s been a week or so talking to the Club and manager to understand exactly what the ambition of the Club is, and also my ambition and what I want to do as a player.

“I think we have got a good match here – my ambition and the Club’s ambition seem to be pretty much the same. I’m pretty excited to see where we can go with this partnership.

“I’m here to help the Club get promoted, I think this Club belongs in the Premier League. With the players, manager and a good structure at the Club we have a good chance.”

He added: “I spoke to a few clubs, and few options here and there, but after speaking to the manager, who told me exactly what he wants, that ambition was something I wanted. I still want to win and achieve something.

“After talking to the manager I decided this is the right place for me to continue my career.”

Mikel made more than 370 appearances for Chelsea, helping them to land the Premier League title twice, as well as three FA Cups, the Champions League and Europa League.

After a spell in China, he played for Middlesbrough after joining them on a short-term deal in January 2019, making 19 appearances. He won 91 caps before retiring from international football following last year’s African Cup of Nations.

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