Throwback to when Jay Jay Okocha retired West Ham

West Ham United fans may not enjoy this footage, but Bolton fans will adore looking back at one of the most exciting players in their club’s history.

Jay Jay Okocha was a phenomenon under Sam Allardyce at Bolton.

Cast your mind back to April 2003, when Bolton and West Ham were both battling away at the bottom of the Premier League.

In a nervy affair at the Reebok Stadium, Okocha took charge, strengthening Bolton’s grip on the top flight, putting daylight between his side and a Hammers side many thought were “too good to go down”.

But Okocha wasn’t the sort of guy to bury a tap-in and be done with it. He tormented West Ham for the duration of the game, testing the goalkeeper early on with a low drive.

And he really stole the show with a wonder goal. He powered through the centre of the pitch, with Joe Cole trailing behind. The talented youngster was left in Okocha’s wake, giving the Nigeria superstar a clear run at goal.

But he still had a lot to do. Four defenders were between him and the goal, and he was some distance out. Instead of playing it to a team-mate or weaving his way through the crowd of defenders, Okocha pulled the trigger and the ball flew into the top corner. Good night, West Ham.

The Hammers went down that season, and Okocha’s Bolton survived in 17th place.

Here are the highlights:

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