Nigeria's Victor Obinna revels in Chievo Verona reunion

By Oluwashina OkelejiBBC Sport, Lagos
Nigeria's Victor Obinna Nsofor

Chievo Verona loan signing Victor Obinna has revealed he did not have to think twice about re-joining the club, five years after he left.

The 26-year-old Nigeria international forward has moved to Chievo for the rest of the season from Russian side Lokomotiv Moscow.

"My European journey started here, so I can't wait to play for the club again," Obinna told BBC Sport.

"When I heard of their interest I didn't have to think about it twice.

"My mind was already made up that I wanted to come back here.

"My football education began during my arrival here in 2005, so definitely it is like a family reunion."

Chievo are currently 16th in Serie A and are battling to avoid relegation from the Italian top flight.

"I love this club and I want to work hard to ensure we stay in Serie A," he said.

"I've played with Chievo in [Italy's second tier] Serie B and this is something that should never happen again."

Obinna started his European career in Italy, playing three seasons at the northern Italian club, scoring 20 goals in 86 appearances, before joining Inter Milan in the summer of 2008.

He spent just one season at Inter before loan spells at Spanish side Malaga and English club West Ham United.

Eight goals in 23 appearances for the Hammers, including an FA Cup hat-trick against Nottingham Forest, prompted a move to Lokomotiv in the summer of 2011.

With the Russian Premier League on a winter break until 8 March, Obinna hopes the loan switch will provide him with regular playing time and increase his chances of playing for Nigeria at the World Cup in Brazil.

"With the Russian League on a winter break, this move gives me a chance to stay in great shape," Obinna said.

"You want to be at your best, help your club and do enough to earn a chance to play at the World Cup.

"I hope to achieve that and also make significant contributions to keep this club in this league. If I can do both, then I will be very happy."

Obinna has played for Nigeria at under-20, Olympic and senior level, winning the 2008 Olympic football silver medal.

He has already been capped 46 times by Nigeria, scoring 12 goals, and he appeared twice for his country at the 2010 World Cup.