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The final journey home for Stephen Keshi, former coach of the Super Eagles who died on June 8, 2016 kicked off with a church service at St Paul Catholic Church, Benin City.
After that, he was moved to the Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium, where a novelty match was played in his honour, followed by the lying in state for his numerous admirers to pay their last respect.
Stephen Keshi, a winner of the Africa Cup of Nations as a player and coach with the Super Eagles, has died aged 54.
The football legend passed away early on Wednesday after a suspected heart attack in Benin City, Southern Nigeria.
Keshi played in five different African Cup of Nations tournaments, captaining the Super Eagles team to their second continental success in 1994 in Tunisia.
He was instrumental as Nigeria made their maiden appearance at the 1994 FIFA World Cup in the US where they reached the second round before losing to Italy.
He played professionally in Ivory Coast, Belgium, France, the US and Malaysia. He also managed the national teams of Togo and Mali.
Appointed coach of the Nigerian team in November 2011, Keshi handled the Super Eagles over four spells, leading them to the 2013 African Cup of Nations title in South Africa – becoming only the second man to win it both as a player and a coach – as well as the last 16 at the 2014 World Cup in Brazil.
There is pride in his achievements, sadness at his death and disappointment at the timing of his exit.
Keshi is fondly remembered for helping tiny Togo to qualify for their first – and to date only – appearance at the World Cup finals, but was sacked a few months before Germany 2006.

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Pallbearers bringing in Keshi’s remains into the church in Benin

In photos, see how it all went down at his funeral…

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L-R: Stephen Femi Keshi, Jennifer Keshi, Emma Enyihor (Ifeyinwa’s husband) and Ifeyinwa Enyihor (daughter)

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Nollywood actor, Alex Usifo, in church

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Amaju Pinnick, president of NFF

 

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Keshi’s first son takes a Bible reading in church

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A cross section of family relations during the church service in Benin.

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Choir of St. Paul Catholic church