You are here: HomeSportsSoccer2020 05 23Article 358708

Soccer News of Saturday, 23 May 2020

Source: MyNigeria

There were no fruits that I didn’t sell - Wilfred Ndidi

Super Eagles player, Wilfred Ndidi has narrated the struggles he went through while growing up as a kid in Nigeria.

The Leicester City defender stated that he had to help his mother sell fruits just to sustain their family.

The 22-year old also revealed how his father was an obstacle to his dream of becoming a footballer.

He told Out of Home Podcast: “Though we had some ups and downs and trying to meet up with some bills, I was always there for my mum,”

“My mum was a food vendor and I supported her by hawking. I don’t regret that because growing up was really tough because it was all about survival. There were no fruits that I didn’t sell.

“I was the market boy and I was known mostly for selling groundnuts because it comes out every season. Just name them – I sold peppers, tomatoes and avocado. We basically sold fruits that came with different seasons. All these were done to survive in the military zone and outside.”

He stated that he got punished on several occasions for playing football.

“It was difficult because my dad wanted me to go to school but there was no money,” he continued.

“What made it easier for me was that when he was transferred out of Lagos. I had the freedom because when he was around, if I go out to train and he gets home before me, I have to explain where I was coming from. When I tell him I went to play football, I get whooped.

“There was a time I got whooped with a cow skin ‘Koboko’ and it was like a tattoo on my body. I couldn’t wear my shirt because when I put my clothes on, it becomes sticky and it’s painful. It was a military kind of discipline.”

Ndidi also revealed that he never had the chance to play with his age group.

“Growing up, I didn’t get a chance to play more with my peers because they were training in the evenings while the bigger guys were training in the morning. I was training with the bigger guys but just for ten minutes because I was too small,” he added.

“They always put me in when everyone is tired and also for them to be able to give me the training bibs to wash and bring the next day.

“My mum kept complaining because I didn’t have the time to wash them because I had to go hawk for her, but before I return, she would have washed them. That was the routine until I left my mum for Nath Boys.”

Join our Newsletter