Tuesday Apr 28, 2020. 13:00
Nigerian legend Emmanuel Amunike has revealed that during his playing career he opted to join Zamalek over a move straight to Europe.
The attacker played for the White Knights from 1991 to 1994. He was named the African Footballer of the Year in ‘94 for his performances both for the Egyptian giants and for the Nigerian national team, which won the Africa Cup of Nations and performed strongly at the World Cup.
“My participation at the All Africa Games in 1991 in Cairo also helped in my move to Egypt because it was at that tournament that Zamalek scouts spotted me,” Amuneke told SPN Africa News, as quoted by KingFut.
Amunike continued, “I wanted to build a legacy for myself because I knew it offered me the opportunity to further develop as a footballer. I had the chance to go straight to Europe from Nigeria but choose to start my career in Egypt.
“This gave me the opportunity to get a lot of insight about African football because I met players from other parts of the continent in Egypt.
“I won two Egyptian league titles with Zamalek and also won the CAF Champions League title during my time in Egypt. I also won the African Super Cup and the Egyptian Cup during my three seasons with the club.”
The Nigerian, who coached Tanzania to a return to the AFCON in 2019 after a long absence, then said that he is still in the employ of Egyptian team Misr El Makkasa. Reports suggested that he had been dismissed, but Amunike claims he has instead been repositioned in the technical hierarchy.
“It is not true. I wasn’t sacked. I am still at El-Makkasa. The team has been struggling from the beginning of the season but we are improving,” he explained.
“The club president wanted me to be in a much higher position but the only thing I disagree with is the manner in which it (the redeployment) was done.
“I wasn’t informed before that decision was taken. But it is not true that I have been sacked because I am still with the club.”