Al Nahda of Saudi Arabia and Tremendous Eagles defender Ifeanyi Anaemena talks on his journey as a footballer, his first invitation to the Eagles, love for Burna Boy and extra on this interview with EBENEZER BAJELA
How did your soccer profession begin?
I began enjoying once I was very younger and that was once I was lower than 13. I began with the U-13 crew of Nice Lion again then in Onitsha. And since then I by no means seemed again, I simply saved shifting ahead.
At what age did you needed to be knowledgeable footballer?
I feel I used to be 15 once I determined that I needed to be knowledgeable footballer. Then I used to be already enjoying for the U-15 of Nice Lion. We received a match and I performed as a right-back. It was an excellent outing for me. With the praises from folks and what everybody was saying about me on the match, I believed that I may turn into knowledgeable footballer, that was how the true journey began for me.
How supportive had been your mother and father in direction of reaching this dream?
We all know how issues normally are with Nigerian mother and father. Initially they had been hell-bent on me going to high school and getting an excellent profession for my future. This made issues powerful till I acquired to the height of my profession. When issues began understanding tremendous, they began displaying curiosity they usually turned my spine. I wish to applaud them for that and thank them for being there for me now.
What had been the challenges you confronted rising up?
I had so much as a result of rising up and enjoying soccer was powerful and hectic. It wasn’t straightforward due to the amenities in Nigeria. It’s not encouraging, particularly in case you don’t have anyone to push you up firstly of your profession. There was nobody to push me, nobody to suggest me even once I was doing my greatest. There have been quite a lot of discouraging components that nearly made me wish to give up soccer however then I used to be steadfast and believed that sometime I’ll make it by means of. My goal was to get to the topflight and characterize my nation, which by God’s grace had come to go.
You as soon as performed for Enyimba, one of many greatest golf equipment in Nigeria. How does it really feel?
Enjoying for Enyimba was a dream come true as a result of Enyimba, Enugu Rangers are among the many greatest golf equipment in Nigeria and as a footballer from the japanese a part of the nation, you all the time wish to characterize these golf equipment. However going to Enyimba was powerful as a result of even when you find yourself good the membership doesn’t signal you identical to that, besides you’ve performed towards them and proven good character or you might be exceptionally good for them to contemplate signing you. For me, becoming a member of Enyimba from Giwa – a membership within the North – was powerful nevertheless it was an amazing transfer for me. I gave my all enjoying for them as a result of they introduced me to the limelight. Enjoying on the continent and getting an invite to the Tremendous Eagles occurred throughout my time with Enyimba. The membership will all the time be in my coronary heart.
What was your response once you first acquired invitation to the Tremendous Eagles?
My first invitation to the nationwide crew gave me pleasure and inspiration as a result of I’d been anticipating it a very long time. It truly got here as an enormous shock and that was in November 2019. It was former coach Gernot Rohr that referred to as me to tell me to report back to the Eagles camp in Uyo, that I had been invited for the AFCON qualifiers towards Benin Republic and Lesotho.
At first, I believed it was a prank however later I came upon it was actual. We had been getting back from a match in Katsina. All of it occurred so quick and I took it that it was my time and God made it occur. I’ve all the time been working onerous and retaining religion that at some point it’ll occur and it did occur, so I’m grateful to God for the chance.
Are you able to recount your first expertise within the Eagles camp?
The sensation was completely different the primary time I used to be there, it was fairly completely different from the membership’s dressing room. The association, sample and depth had been fairly completely different. Individuals appear to be a lot concentrated pondering of find out how to get an excellent end result, some enjoying music whereas others cracked jokes. It was actually enjoyable although.
Have been you jittery once you met among the huge gamers you normally watched on TV?
There was no type of discrimination within the camp, I have to confess. I bear in mind once I was invited, I used to be the one home-based participant within the crew and I used to be totally welcome. However as in each case, I knew there was an enormous distinction between the NPFL gamers and the overseas-based gamers. They’re unbiased and everyone tries to respect one another, however I used to be not jittery or felt intimidated as a result of Rohr tried to place everyone on the identical stage and we associated with one another properly. It was inspirational for me to fulfill the gamers I’ve watched on TV and now shared similar dressing room with them.
Which of the gamers made you’re feeling snug?
Virtually all of the gamers welcomed me, particularly the coach. His method and interplay helped me really feel at house. So, I’ll say Gernot Rohr made issues very straightforward for me within the Eagles camp.
How do you chill out?
I all the time attempt to spend time with my household. I prefer to have high quality time with my spouse and kids as a result of they’ve been my spine and as soon as I’m not on the sector it’s normally with them.
Who’s your favorite musician?
I take heed to Burna Boy and Fela Anikulapo-Kuti however I really like Burna Boy extra.
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