John Obi Mikel father abducted in Nigeria

view gallery VIEW GALLERY

Chelsea midfielder John Obi Mikel has appealed for information on the whereabouts of his father, who has been abducted in his native Nigeria.

Mikel is not the first footballer whose family has been targeted. Click here or click the image to launch our guide to the players who had family members abducted.

Mikel played in yesterday's 0-0 draw at Stoke despite learning a day previously that his father had gone missing on Friday.

Speaking on Sky Sports News, Mikel said he and his family are yet to hear anything regarding his father's whereabouts or who might have taken him, and he made a direct appeal for his father's release.

"Please just let him go," he said. "He's just an old man, he hasn't done any harm to anyone as far as I know and I don't know why he has been taken."

Michael Obi, who runs a transport company, has not been seen or heard from since he failed to return home from work in Jos, the capital of Plateau State in central Nigeria.

With no contact made and no ransom demand yet received, Mikel is seeking information and help from anyone who can provide it.

"Nigeria is the country I am from, I've always tried to help my country in any way I can, playing for my country or anything," he said. "This is a time where I need the country to help me. Whoever has got my dad, whoever knows where my dad is, please contact me and hopefully he can be released."

Mikel was told about the situation by Chelsea manager Andre Villas-Boas and his own agent after training on Saturday, and turned out at Stoke with only one of his team-mates - Salomon Kalou - aware of the situation.

"I was actually in having a massage when the manager sent for me," Kalou said. "I went to his office, he said, 'There is a situation, your dad is missing'.

"I didn't know about it, obviously. My family didn't want to tell me until after the game."

Mikel said he asked for time to absorb the news but, after speaking with his family, he told Villas-Boas he still wanted to play.

"I was shocked," he said. "(Villas-Boas) asked me what I wanted to do, did I still want to go to the game. I told him I needed a couple of hours to speak to my family and my agent.

"I told him I would like to play the game because I wouldn't want to let my team down, let the club down and obviously let my family down. I think if I didn't play that game, my mum would be very sad with me. I spoke to my mum before the game and she told me to go out there and be strong...

"I don't think my team-mates really know about it at the moment," he added. "I told (Didier) Drogba about it today and before the game I told Kalou because he is a very good friend.

"But I didn't want everyone coming to me saying, 'I'm sorry, I'm sorry'. I just wanted to get on with it."

News
people'It can last and it's terrifying'
Sport
Danny Welbeck's Manchester United future is in doubt
footballGunners confirm signing from Manchester United
Sport
footballStriker has moved on loan for the remainder of the season
Sport
footballFeaturing Bart Simpson
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
New Articles
Olivia Colman topped the list of the 30 most influential females in broadcasting
tv
News
Kelly Brook
peopleA spokesperson said the support group was 'extremely disappointed'
News
The five geckos were launched into space to find out about the effects of weightlessness on the creatures’ sex lives
i100
Life and Style
techIf those brochure kitchens look a little too perfect to be true, well, that’s probably because they are
Sport
Andy Murray celebrates a shot while playing Jo-Wilfried Tsonga
TennisWin sets up blockbuster US Open quarter-final against Djokovic
Arts and Entertainment
Hare’s a riddle: Kit Williams with the treasure linked to Masquerade
booksRiddling trilogy could net you $3m
Arts and Entertainment
Alex Kapranos of Franz Ferdinand performs live
music Pro-independence show to take place four days before vote
News
news Video - hailed as 'most original' since Benedict Cumberbatch's
News
i100
Life and Style
The longer David Sedaris had his Fitbit, the further afield his walks took him through the West Sussex countryside
lifeDavid Sedaris: What I learnt from my fitness tracker about the world
Arts and Entertainment
Word master: Self holds up a copy of his novel ‘Umbrella’
booksUnlike 'talented mediocrity' George Orwell, you must approach this writer dictionary in hand
News
i100
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

'I’ll tell you what I would not serve - lamb and potatoes': US ambassador hits out at stodgy British food served at diplomatic dinners

'I’ll tell you what I would not serve - lamb and potatoes'

US ambassador hits out at stodgy British food
Radio Times female powerlist: A 'revolution' in TV gender roles

A 'revolution' in TV gender roles

Inside the Radio Times female powerlist
Endgame: James Frey's literary treasure hunt

James Frey's literary treasure hunt

Riddling trilogy could net you $3m
Fitbit: Because the tingle feels so good

Fitbit: Because the tingle feels so good

What David Sedaris learnt about the world from his fitness tracker
Saudis risk new Muslim division with proposal to move Mohamed’s tomb

Saudis risk new Muslim division with proposal to move Mohamed’s tomb

Second-holiest site in Islam attracts millions of pilgrims each year
Alexander Fury: The designer names to look for at fashion week this season

The big names to look for this fashion week

This week, designers begin to show their spring 2015 collections in New York
Will Self: 'I like Orwell's writing as much as the next talented mediocrity'

'I like Orwell's writing as much as the next talented mediocrity'

Will Self takes aim at Orwell's rules for writing plain English
Meet Afghanistan's middle-class paint-ballers

Meet Afghanistan's middle-class paint-ballers

Toy guns proving a popular diversion in a country flooded with the real thing
Al Pacino wows Venice

Al Pacino wows Venice

Ham among the brilliance as actor premieres two films at festival
Neil Lawson Baker interview: ‘I’ve gained so much from art. It’s only right to give something back’.

Neil Lawson Baker interview

‘I’ve gained so much from art. It’s only right to give something back’.
The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

Wife of President Robert Mugabe appears to have her sights set on succeeding her husband
The model of a gadget launch: Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed

The model for a gadget launch

Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed
Alice Roberts: She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

Alice Roberts talks about her new book on evolution - and why her early TV work drew flak from (mostly male) colleagues
Get well soon, Joan Rivers - an inspiration, whether she likes it or not

Get well soon, Joan Rivers

She is awful. But she's also wonderful, not in spite of but because of the fact she's forever saying appalling things, argues Ellen E Jones
Doctor Who Into the Dalek review: A classic sci-fi adventure with all the spectacle of a blockbuster

A fresh take on an old foe

Doctor Who Into the Dalek more than compensated for last week's nonsensical offering