|Full name||Uchechukwu Alozie Okechukwu|
|Date of birth||27 September 1967|
|Place of birth||Lagos, Nigeria|
|Height||1.89 m (6 ft 2 1⁄2 in)|
|Playing position||Centre back|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only|
"Uche" was a short form of the Igbo name "Uchechukwu" (meaning "God´s will"). He was also honoured as the foreign player who played in Turkey for the longest period of time (13 years), going on to obtain Turkish citizenship under the name Deniz Uygar.
Early years / DenmarkEdit
In July 1990 he moved abroad to join Danish club Brøndby IF, being signed by newly appointed coach Morten Olsen alongside teammate Friday Elahor. Soon a part of the starting XI, Okechukwu helped the team win the 1990 and 1991 Danish championship, and was one of the mainstays of the squad that reached the semifinals of the 1990–91 UEFA Cup; while Elahor was touted by some as the next Brian Laudrup, he would soon leave for Africa Sports, while Okechukwu would be named the 1992's Brøndby IF Player of the Year.
Turkey / RetirementEdit
After appearing in the 1992 African Cup of Nations, where Nigeria reached the semi-finals, Okechukwu was linked to Turkish side Fenerbahçe SK for half a year, until he was bought in a DKK8 million transfer deal in November 1993. At Istanbul, he formed a defensive duo with former Brøndby teammate Jes Høgh, helping the club to its first Süper Lig championship in seven years in 1996.
Okechukwu played a further four seasons with Fenerbahçe, repeating league accolades in 2000–01. After nearly 250 official games he moved to fellow league team İstanbulspor AS, returning in 2007 to Nigeria first with Ocean Boys F.C. then with Bayelsa United FC (joining the latter in July 2008, and retiring shortly after, aged 41).
Okechukwu made his debut for the Nigeria national team at the 1990 African Cup of Nations tournament, in a 1–5 loss against Algeria in their opening game. For the remainder of the competition the Super Eagles' defense did not concede another goal, until they were beaten 0–1 by the same opponent in the final.
Altogether, Okechukwu played 47 internationals, winning the CAN in 1994 (2–1 against Zambia) and the 1996 Summer Olympics. He also represented the nation in two FIFA World Cups, helping it progress to two consecutive round-of- 16 contests as he appeared in seven complete matches combined, only missing out in the group stage 1–3 loss to Paraguay due to having collected two yellow cards.
- Nigeria Premier League: 1987–88, 1988–89
- Danish Superliga: 1990, 1991
- Süper Lig: 1995–96, 2000–01
- Brøndby Player of the Year: 1992
- Name meaning at Nigerian.name
- Uche Okechukwu (Deniz Uygar) ve jübilesi (Uche Okechukwu (Deniz Uygar) retires); Unifeb Forums (in Turkish)
- Uche Okechukwu (Deniz Uygur); Fenerbahçe Gazetesi, 8 January 2011 (in Turkish)
- "Uche Alozie Okechukwu – International Appearances". RSSSF. Retrieved 15 August 2017.
- NigerianPlayers profile
- Uche Okechukwu at the Turkish Football Federation
- Uche Okechukwu at National-Football-Teams.com
- Uche Okechukwu – FIFA competition record
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