Victor Obinna

Victor Nsofor Obinna (born 25 March 1987) is a Nigerian professional footballer who plays as a striker.

Victor Obinna
Obinna playing for Lokomotiv Moscow in 2011
Personal information
Full name Victor Nsofor Obinna
Date of birth (1987-03-25) 25 March 1987
Place of birth Jos, Nigeria
Height 1.80 m (5 ft 11 in)
Playing position Striker
Youth career
2003 Plateau United
2004 Kwara United
2005 Enyimba
2005 Internacional
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
2005–2008 Chievo 82 (19)
2008–2011 Internazionale 9 (1)
2009–2010Málaga (loan) 26 (4)
2010–2011West Ham United (loan) 25 (3)
2011–2015 Lokomotiv Moscow 45 (3)
2014Chievo (loan) 10 (2)
2015–2016 MSV Duisburg 15 (3)
2016–2017 Darmstadt 98 2 (0)
2017–2018 Cape Town City 12 (1)
National team
2005–2014 Nigeria 48 (12)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 22:08, 24 May 2019 (UTC)
‡ National team caps and goals correct as of 06:40, 13 April 2014 (UTC)

Obinna in Igbo, literally means "father's heart".[1] He played for Chievo in Italy's Serie B, having played regularly in Serie A with the club until their relegation in 2007. He made his full international debut for Nigeria at the 2006 African Cup of Nations, scoring once in three appearances as his side were eliminated in the semi-finals.

Club career

Early career

Obinna played for Nigerian clubs Plateau United and Kwara United, he went on trials with Italian clubs Internazionale, Perugia and Juventus before signing with Brazilian club Internacional, but international clearance problems meant that the transfer was never finalised.[2] He rejoined Enyimba to take part in their domestic league campaign and CAF Champions League defence.


Obinna was signed by Italian club Chievo on a five-year contract in July 2005.[3] But also reported that Chievo formed an agreement with Internazionale that Obinna first registered as Chievo player in order to use the non-EU registration quota of Chievo, like Júlio César in the 2004–05 season. Then he would be call back to Inter.[4][5]

In his first season with Chievo, Obinna scored six goals in 26 games, including a goal on his Serie A debut against Parma in a 1–0 win, 11 September 2005. In the first months of the 2006 season, Obinna was suspended for having signed a contract with both Internacional and Chievo in 2005.[6] Chievo were relegated at the end of the 2006–07 season, casting some doubt over Obinna's future;[6] the club choosing to keep Obinna in the squad to help gain promotion back to Serie A.

On 4 October 2007, Obinna was involved in a car accident on his way home from training in which he swerved away from a vehicle that had tried to overtake him around a bend. He escaped with only a few cuts and bruises.[6] The car flipped several times and was heavily damaged. He lost consciousness and was taken to hospital. The accident occurred only a few hundred yards away from where former Chievo player Jason Mayélé was killed in a car accident in 2002.[6]


In the summer of 2008, Obinna moved back to Inter for a €1.2 million transfer fee in a three-year contract.[7] English club Everton attempted to immediately sign him on loan, but were unable to secure a work permit for the player.[8][9] Obinna's first goal for Inter came on 19 October in a 4–0 win over Roma. Internazionale coach José Mourinho described Obinna as one of Inter's best talents for the future.[10]


On 26 August 2009, Spanish La Liga side Málaga signed Obinna on a season-long loan.[11] He scored his first goal for the Andalusian club on 4 October in 1–1 a draw against Xerez, a match in which he was also sent off.[12]

West Ham United

On 27 August 2010, Obinna signed for West Ham United on a season-long loan with the option of a permanent deal in 2011.[3] He made his debut for West Ham on 11 September in a 3–1 home defeat to Chelsea.[13] He scored his first goal for West Ham in a 2–1 win against Sunderland in the third round of the League Cup at the Stadium of Light on 21 September 2010.[14] He scored his first league goal in 3–1 win against Wigan Athletic on 27 November 2010.[15] He continued the fine form with four assists in a 4–0 win against Manchester United on 30 November 2010, automatically booking a first League Cup semi-final for 20 years.[16]

Obinna was sent off during West Ham's semi-final, first leg match on 11 January 2011 against Birmingham City for an off the ball challenge on Sebastian Larsson with West Ham having conceded an equaliser just minutes earlier.[17] On 30 January, Obinna scored a hat-trick in a FA Cup 4th round tie against Nottingham Forest, leading West Ham to a 3–2 victory.[18] He followed that up three days later with two goals as West Ham beat Blackpool 3–1 at Bloomfield Road.[19]

Lokomotiv Moscow

On 19 June 2011, Obinna signed a four-year deal with Lokomotiv Moscow on a free transfer.[20][21]

MSV Duisburg

Obinna joined MSV Duisburg on 9 September 2015 for the 2015–16 season.[22]


He joined SV Darmstadt on 5 August 2016.[23] He was released on 31 January 2017.[24]

Cape Town City

In September 2017, Obinna signed for Premier Soccer League side Cape Town City. At the time of signing, the club were managed by former West Ham teammate Benni McCarthy.[25]

International career

Obinna was a member of the U-20 Flying Eagles that won the gold in Benin in the African Youth Tournament in 2005 he was called up to the Nigerian senior squad at the 2006 African Cup of Nations, scoring once before his side's semifinal elimination.

In August 2008, he was named amongst Nigeria's squad for the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing. Obinna scored Nigeria's first goal in a 2–1 win against Japan[26] the "Dream Team IV"[27] winning goal in the final group match against the United States,[28] ensuring that Nigeria qualified for the quarter-finals.[29] Nigeria were drawn against Ivory Coast who they beat 2–0, with Obinna scoring a penalty and setting up Peter Odemwingie for the other goal.[30] He later captained the Nigerian team when they beat Belgium 4–1 in the semi-final match,[28][31] before losing to Argentina in the final.[32]

Career statistics


Source: [33]

Appearances and goals by club, season and competition
Club Season League Cup Continental Other Total
Chievo 2005–06 Serie A 26610276
2006–07 24531276
2007–08 Serie B 328328
Total 8219418620
Inter Milan 2008–09 Serie A 91200000111
Málaga (loan) 2009–10 La Liga 26410274
West Ham United (loan) 2010–11 Premier League 253334[lower-alpha 1]2328
Lokomotiv Moscow 2011–12 Russian Premier League 161208[lower-alpha 2]2263
2012–13 2622000282
2013–14 301040
Total 4535082585
Chievo 2013–14 Serie A 10200102
MSV Duisburg 2015–16 2. Bundesliga 15300153
SV Darmstadt 2016–17 Bundesliga 200020
Cape Town City 2017–18 Premier Soccer League 12120141
Career total 22636174824225544
  1. All appearance(s) in Football League Cup
  2. All appearance(s) in UEFA Europa League


Source: [34]

Appearances and goals by national team and year
National teamYearAppsGoals






  1. "Obinna". 13 January 2008. Retrieved 23 August 2010.
  2. World Cup Profile: Victor Obinna Nsofor – Nigeria, 1 May 2010
  3. "Hammers capture Obinna". West Ham United FC. 27 August 2010. Archived from the original on 29 August 2010. Retrieved 27 August 2010.
  4. "MORATTI: "COMPLIMENTS TO MANCINI & THE TEAM"". F.C. Internazionale Milano. ANSA. 22 December 2005. Retrieved 18 March 2008.
  5. "Facchetti: "a good test to start off"". F.C. Internazionale Milano. 5 January 2006. Retrieved 18 March 2008.
  6. "Inter Milan Strike Gold With Victor Obinna". 11 March 2009. Retrieved 24 September 2010.
  7. FC Internazionale Milano 2008–09 bilancio, Require purchase in CCIAA (in Italian)
  8. McLeod, Scott (1 September 2008). "Obinna Deal Falls Through". Everton FC. Retrieved 1 September 2008.
  9. "Everton try to bring in Obinna". BBC Sport. 28 August 2008. Retrieved 28 August 2008.
  10. Nursey, James (22 August 2010). "Hammers move to tie up Inter striker". MirrorFootball. Trinity Mirror. Retrieved 24 September 2010.
  11. "Obinna pasó reconocimiento médico en el Complejo Sanitario Málaga C. F. – Clínicas Rincón". Málaga Club de Fútbol. 26 August 2009. Archived from the original on 26 September 2009. Retrieved 27 August 2009.
  12. "Xerez 1–1 Malaga". 5 October 2009. Archived from the original on 17 March 2012. Retrieved 25 August 2010.
  13. Sheringham, Sam (11 September 2010). "West Ham 1–3 Chelsea". BBC Sport. Retrieved 12 September 2010.
  14. "Sunderland 1–2 West Ham United FT". West Ham United FC. 21 September 2010. Archived from the original on 24 September 2010. Retrieved 22 September 2010.
  15. "West Ham United v Wigan Athletic". Yahoo Eurosport UK. Yahoo! News Network. 27 November 2010. Retrieved 12 January 2011.
  16. "West Ham United v Manchester United | Carling Cup 2010–2011". Yahoo Eurosport UK. Yahoo! News Network. 30 November 2010. Retrieved 12 January 2011.
  17. Stevenson, Jonathan (11 January 2011). "West Ham 2–1 Birmingham". BBC Sport. Retrieved 12 January 2011.
  18. "Obinna treble fells Forest". Sky Sports. 30 January 2011. Retrieved 31 January 2011.
  19. "Blackpool 1–3 West Ham". BBC Sport. 2 February 2011. Retrieved 3 February 2011.
  20. "Obinna signs for Locomotiv Moscow". 19 June 2011. Retrieved 19 June 2011.
  21. "Локомотив" подписал контракт с Обинной [Lokomotiv has signed a contract with Obinna]. FC Lokomotiv Moscow (in Russian). 20 June 2011. Archived from the original on 23 June 2011. Retrieved 20 June 2011.
  22. "Zebras verstärken sich mit Stürmer: Victor Obinna kommt!" (in German). 9 September 2015.
  23. "Lilien nehmen Obinna unter Vertrag" (in German). 5 August 2016.
  24. "Transfer window January 2017: every deal in Europe's top five leagues". 31 January 2017.
  25. May, Edward (12 September 2017). "Official: Cape Town City sign former Inter and West Ham striker Victor Obinna". Goal. Retrieved 15 September 2017.
  26. "Obinna spurs Nigeria revival". 10 August 2008. Retrieved 23 August 2010.
  27. Obinna: Written in the stars, 20 August 2008
  28. "Dream Team" face up to criticism BBC Sport, 14 August 2008
  29. "Olympics: Nigeria eliminates U.S. 2–1, advance to quarterfinals". NAIJANET.COM. 13 August 2008. Archived from the original on 1 October 2011. Retrieved 24 September 2010.
  30. Nigeria 2–0 Ivory Coast: Odemwingie stars ESPN Soccernet, 16 August 2008
  31. Slick Nigeria crush sorry Belgium BBC Sport, 19 August 2008
  32. Argentina keeps Olympic gold in men’s soccer, 23 August 2008
  33. "Victor Obinna". Soccerway. Retrieved 12 September 2019.
  34. "Victor Obinna". National Football Teams. Benjamin Strack-Zimmerman. Retrieved 12 September 2019.
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