Mikel Obi gives guidance during Luis Diaz’s parents’ trauma of being abducted.
Retired Chelsea midfielder John Obi Mikel has revealed fresh details of how former Blues owner Roman Abramovich offered to help him when his father was kidnapped five years ago, Soccernet.ng reports.
Mikel made the revelations while extending a piece of heartfelt advice to Liverpool winger Luis Diaz following the recent abduction of Diaz’s father in Colombia.
Both of Diaz’s parents were captured; however, his father remained in captivity while his mother was quickly released. The Liverpool player has attracted a lot of attention for his heartfelt appeal to the responsible guerilla group for his father’s safe release.
Mikel, who underwent a similar ordeal twice during his professional career, encouraged Diaz to maintain composure and take all necessary measures to secure his father’s freedom.
Reminiscing his own trials, Mikel commended Liverpool’s support for Diaz as he highlights the significance of a robust support system during such challenging moments.
Mikel told talkSport, “I’m glad to see that Liverpool is very supportive.”
“I have to commend Liverpool on their efforts. Luis Diaz’s situation and mine are comparable. There is nothing at all you can do in a scenario like this.
“I hope he continues to be strong; I understand exactly what you are going through. I am aware that he is having a difficult moment as a player. I am aware of the struggles his family faces as well.
“My message to him is to stay strong and do everything you can to ensure that your dad is released,” Mikel stated.
Mikel revealed how the Blues’ then-owner Roman Abramovich volunteered to personally assist after his father was abducted five years ago. Mikel went through a similar ordeal twice when his father was abducted, once in 2011 and again in 2018.
When he learned of the kidnapping, Mikel, the Super Eagles’ captain at the time, was getting ready to lead Nigeria against Argentina in their final World Cup group stage match.
Mikel continued, “My brother called me two hours before the game to tell me that my dad had been kidnapped in Nigeria twice.”
“When he was first abducted, I communicated with the kidnappers and they demanded a large sum of money, which I eventually paid them before my dad was freed.
“However, the second incident occurred when I was representing my nation and I received a call from my brother informing me that my father had been abducted twice.
“That was incredibly startling. Although the first encounter was startling, the second encounter was even more so because I was going to enter one of the most important games of my life.
Mikel’s father, Pa Michael Obi, was eventually released after a week.