Former Super Eagles chief coach, Chief Adegboye Onigbinde, has extolled the virtues of the wife of late Nigerian soccer icon, Teslim ‘Thunder’ Balogun, Alhaja Mulikat, who died exactly 20 years ago today May 26.
Onigbinde, described Mulikat ‘Thunder’ Balogun, as the mother of Nigerian football greatness in the 60’s and 70’s with the roles she played in encouraging her legendary husband to take the country’s football to a great height.
He said: “Alhaja Mulikat who married her Teslim Akanni ‘Thunder’ Balogun in 1955 and later joined him in London mid-1956, was a key influential figure to convince her husband to return to Nigeria in 1958 dumping British club, Queens Park Rangers, with the sole purpose of developing the football standard in the old Western Region, when the Premier at the time, Chief Obafemi Awolowo, visited them to convince and fast track their return home.
“At a time Thunder Balogun was very reluctant to play for the Red Devils of Nigeria, it was Alhaja Mulikat who insisted that the legend must represent his country and ‘Thunder’ afterwards played several important matches for Nigeria.”
The President-General of the Nigeria Football Supporters Club, Dr. Rafiu Ladipo, in his own tribute to the late wife of Teslim ‘Thunder’ Balogun, said Alhaja Mulikat, was a great lover of Nigerian football, who played noble roles in her husband’s glorious soccer career. “She rendered assistance to various youth clubs in Lagos for the development of the game that brought fame to Thunder Balogun.” Ladipo noted that: “After her husband’s death, Alhaja Mulikat, still continued with her unalloyed support for youth football development. We celebrate her 20 years memorial today with joy in our hearts.”