Nigeria goalscorer Sunday Mba described his side's 1-0 African Nations Cup final win over Burkina Faso as "a dream come true."
Mba fired the Super Eagles to their third title, their first since 1994, with a superb volley five minutes before the break.
Nigeria dominated the game as Burkina Faso struggled to impose themselves on the match, their first ever final in the history of the tournament.
Wilfried Sanou came close to levelling for the Stallions midway through the second half but his brief flash of brilliance was extinguished by a top-drawer save by Nigeria goalkeeper Vincent Enyeama.
Mba, who plays for Nigeria Premier League side Warri Wolves, hopes the result will help to boost his career in the aftermath of the tournament.
He said: "I'm so happy it is a dream come true. I don't know what to say.
"We really worked hard and we were looking forward to this day and I'm so happy for this.
"It will go a long way towards my career. This is my first time and I'm very happy.
"We gave all that we had."
It was Nigeria's first final since 2000 but they were hot favourites ahead of the match against the minnows from west Africa due to their 12-game unbeaten record.
Their win means coach Stephen Keshi becomes only the second man to win the cup as coach and player, following in the footsteps of Egyptian Mahmoud Al Gohari.