Nigerian retired footballer and coach Emmanuel Amunike who played as a left winger was born on December 25, 1970. He represented Nigeria at the 1994 World Cup and the 1996 Summer Olympics in Atlanta but his professional career was cut short by a knee injury.
Earlier in his career, Amunike won the domestic league titles in Nigeria and Egypt, while playing for Julius Berger F.C. and Zamalek SC respectively. In 1994, he signed for Sporting Clube de Portugal.
In the 1996 December transfer window, Amunike was bought by La Liga giants FC Barcelona for $3.6 million. He soared higher making his mark in the club till a serious knee injury, following which he appeared very rarely for the club.
In 2000, Amunike was released by Barça and although he never fully recovered from his condition he palyed for Albacete Balompié (also Spain, Segunda División), Busan I’Cons (South Korea, only a couple of months) and Al-Wehdat SC (Jordan), retiring from football at the age of 34. In 2008, he spent some time as an assistant coach at Saudi Premier League side Al-Hazm, but left to become a scout for Manchester United.
Amunike took over the head coaching duties at former team Julius Berger on 23 December 2008, after completing two years of coaching courses in Europe. For a while, he combined this position with the role for the Red Devils, but eventually quit his post in England to concentrate on his coaching career.
Amunike was sacked halfway through his first season after conflicts with management, despite saving the team from relegation. He was later hired in early November 2009 as the new coach of Ocean Boys FC.
In November 2017, he became coach of Al Khartoum SC and left in March 2018. He was voted African Footballer of the Year 1994 and scored the winning goal in the final of the 1996 Summer Olympics in Atlanta as the national team won the gold medal..
Amunike’s younger brothers, Kingsley and Kevin, were also footballers. Both also played several years in Portugal, amongst other countries. He has two sons; Joseph Amuneke and Matthew Amuneke