As you're all by now aware, John Obi Mikel's father has been kidnapped in Nigeria. Despite this, Mikel played for Chelsea in their 0-0 draw against Stoke City on Sunday, which must have taken real guts considering how awful the situation is. Many of us have been hoping to hear from Mikel himself about the deal, so here he is:
I've always tried to help the country, this is the time for the country to help me, whoever knows where my dad is should please contact me.
I think [that people] do know [where he is], my family have lived there all their lives so they will know who he is and who I am. This happens a lot in the eastern part of Nigeria but my dad would probably be the first this has happened to in the northern part which is a very safe place, this is very rare and is surprising everyone.
I don't think my team-mates know, I told [Didier] Drogba today [Monday] and [Salomon] Kalou who is a good friend, I didn't want everyone coming up and saying sorry.
-John Obi Mikel. Source: Sky Sports News via BBC.
Mikel doesn't want everyone feeling sorry for him, which is admirable. I'm sure, however, that he'd appreciate being in the fans' thoughts, so let's make this a Jon Obi Mikel appreciation thread. He'll never read it, of course, but I'd like to think if he did we could make him smile at least a little bit.
I'll start: John Obi Mikel is a wonderful, underrated player who more than deserves a spot on this team. He is also, by most accounts, a fine human being as well. My thoughts go out to him and his family.