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Stanley Nwabali Receives Hero’s Welcome In South Africa

Chippa United fans celebrated the Nigerian goalkeeper’s return amid controversy



Stanley Nwabali Receives Hero’s Welcome In South Africa

Stanley Nwabali, the Nigerian goalkeeper who played an important role in the Super Eagles’ recent AFCON performance, received a hero’s welcome upon his return to South Africa, News About Nigeria reports.

Despite earlier reports suggesting that Nwabali had been warned to stay away from the country, he was greeted by hundreds of Chippa United fans at the Port Elizabeth airport.

Former Super Eagles goalkeeper Idah Peterside had claimed on national television that Nwabali might face backlash for denying South Africa a place in the AFCON final through his penalty shootout heroics.

However, the warm reception by Chippa United fans contradicts those fears.

Upon his arrival, Nwabali was seen, in a video that has gone viral, engaging with his fans. He took selfies and joined them in singing the club’s songs.

The president of Chippa United had publicly expressed support for Nwabali and the Super Eagles against South Africa in the AFCON semifinal.

Nwabali’s impressive performance in the AFCON was applauded by all his fans.

Although the Super Eagles lost to Ivory Coast in the finals, the Nigerian goalkeeper received cash gifts, a national honour alongside his teammates, and was even conferred with a chieftaincy title, “Ugo Egbema – The Pride of Egbema Kingdom,” by the traditional ruler of the Mgbede community in Egbema Kingdom, Rivers State, Nzeobi Amida.

Governor Siminalayi Fubara of Rivers State also honoured Nwabali with a cash gift of N20 million and bestowed upon him the title of Distinguished Service Star of Rivers State.

Furthermore, President Bola Tinubu honoured every player and official of the Nigerian Super Eagles with the Member of the Order of the Niger national award for securing the silver medal at the just-concluded AFCON.