Sports Centre Named After Ex-Super Eagles Goalkeeper, Agbonavbare

Willy Agbonavbare died on 27th January 2015 aged 48



The Spanish capital, Madrid City Council has approved the motion to name a Sports Center after ex Super Eagles goalkeeper, Wilfred‘Willy’ Agbonavbare.

The motion was moved by Councillor Paco Perez during plenary session.

The politician recommended renaming the Alberto Garcia Sports Center at Rua Reguera Tomateros after the late Super Eagles gloves man.

Wilfred Agbonavbare who died on 27th January 2015 is a cult hero in Vallecas having played for Rayo Vallecano between 1990 and 1996.

He was a member of the Eagles team that won the 1994 Africa Cup of Nations in Tunisia.

He also reached the round of 16 at the United States World Cup in the same year.

Agbonavbare’s career in Brief

Late Agbonavbare spent a long career in Spain, starting with Rayo in Segunda División (La Liga 2).

In his second season with the Madrid outskirts club, Agbonavbare appeared in all 38 league games (3,332 minutes of action, 27 goals conceded, second-best in the competition).

His efforts saw the team finish second and return to La Liga after two years absence.

He maintained his position as first-choice in the following years, contributing with 31 matches to another top flight promotion in 1995.

In 1995–96, Agbonavbare lost his starting position to Spanish international Abel Resino.

In the following summer, he signed for second level side Écija Balompié, being the most used player in his position but suffering team relegation.

After one year in Nigeria, training and trying to stay fit, he retired due to lack of offers at only 31.

Thereafter, Agbonavbare settled in the Community of Madrid after retirement, working as a delivery man and a goalkeeper coach.

In late January 2015 it was revealed that he was suffering from cancer, and he subsequently underwent treatment at the Hospital Universitario Príncipe de Asturias in Alcalá de Henares.

Both Agonavbare’s former team Rayo Vallecano and its opponents Atlético Madrid displayed a banner during their league match at the Vicente Calderón Stadium on 24 January that read “Fuerza Wilfred” (You Can Do It Wilfred).

Unfortunately, he succumbed to the disease three days later, aged 48.

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