Hello everyone out there, trust you’re doing just fine. Today on our interview seat is an over talented and Goalkeeper extraordinaire.
Ladies and gentlemen, without keeping you all in suspense, meet my guest.
Lodgexpress: Welcome to Lodgexpress Media, let’s know you please
Abuchi: My name is Okeke Abuchi, I’m from Anambra State and I play football professionally for FC Ifeanyi Ubah
Lodgexpress: Okay so what is your relationship status?
Abuchi: I’m not yet married but I’m in a relationship
Lodgexpress: Growing up, how was it like playing football??
Abuchi: It was a bit tough, yu’knw, having to be in school, help my mother sell in the market and still find time for training, it was really tasking
Lodgexpress: Did you started your playing career with the complete football kits?
Abuchi: No! I started off playing barefooted because buying a boot and a pair of gloves was really a big challenge
Lodgexpress: Let’s know about your journey so far, tell us about the clubs you’ve played for
Abuchi: I signed my first professional contract with a Ghana outfit, Dreams Football Club and played for the first division, then I joined Nilayo FC, an amateur side then, before switching to Remo Stars and currently with Football Club Ifeanyi Ubah
Lodgexpress: It’s like Nilayo FC gained promotion and are now playing in the National League, so what’s the feeling rocking the FC Ifeanyi Ubah jersey?
Abuchi: Yes Nilayo FC are now in the NNL and my time so far with FC Ifeanyi Ubah has really been wonderful… yeah! I’m surrounded by great coaches and the players are fantastic, it’s all I need to bring out the best in me, it feels so good to be here
Lodgexpress: So tell us, who has really influenced your career positively?
Abuchi: My role model, Bayern Munich and Germany great, Manuel Neuer
Lodgexpress: And how influencing has Manuel Neuer been to you?
Abuchi: Everything about him is fantastic, he’s an awesome Goalkeeper and his Goalkeeping technique, just awe-inspiring, unique and special
Lodgexpress: So no football player in the NPFL has influenced you?
Abuchi: Then we’re talking about Ex Enyimba and Kano Pillars Goalkeeper, Emmanuel Fabiyi, then Moses Ochigie, Lobi Stars shotstopper, and Amas Obasogie, Bendel Insurance goaltender
Lodgexpress: Impressive. So who’s the toughest opponent you’ve faced?
Abuchi: Stephen Gopey, ex Lobi Stars and current Rivers United hotspot
Lodgexpress: You’ve had some bad times and sad moments, some of which you’d want to forget about, so tell us about it
Abuchi: My worst and saddest moment in my career was when I got the news of my dad’s death while I was gearing for an all-important match that same day
Lodgexpress: That must have really been disheartening and frustrating
Abuchi: Yeah! Sure it was but I’ve since moved on
Lodgexpress: So what’s your best quote of all time?
Abuchi: (Smiles) as funny as it sounds, I always yell “God Abeg Oooooo….Go Hard Or You Go Home…. It sounds funny but has deep connotative meaning
Lodgexpress: Very funny but didactic…. So who are the NPFL players that will make up your starting eleven?
Abuchi: I’ll go with Abuchi OKEKE – of course myself, in goal, then I’ll have the likes of Olisa NDAH, Festus AUSTIN, Ebube DURU and Christian MOLOKWU, line in front of me, then my midfield trio will be made up of Samuel MATTHEW, legendary Rabiu ALI and Saidu ADAMU while upfront, Ekene AWAZIE, Solomon KALU and Ndifreke EFFIONG will make up my best eleven
Lodgexpress: And who are your best five goalkeepers in the league?
Abuchi: John Nobel (Enyimba), Franklin Akwari (FC Ifeanyi Ubah), Sochima Victor (Jigawa Golden Stars), Sharp Uzoigwe (FC Ifeanyi Ubah) and Lobi Stars newest acquisition, Stanley Nwabili from Wikki Tourists
Lodgexpress: So if have the opportunity to represent your country at the international level, what will the World expect from you?
Abuchi: It will be an honor and I’ll give in my best to stop all the shots fired at me
Lodgexpress: If you had decided against becoming a professional football player, which profession would you have ventured into?
Abuchi: Business! Would have gone to school, grab my certificate and go into business
Lodgexpress: You’ve had experiences in the league so far, what suggestions or advice would you communicate with the League Management Company, LMC, that will better improve the standard of he league?
Abuchi: Well I’ll start by lauding them for the introduction of the NPFL TV, it is a welcome development but suffered lapses few weeks before the break. I’ll urge them to do all it can to make it come to stay. The officiating his season has been topnotch and the idea of going for a break isn’t bad but it becomes worrisome when the players have to stay home beyond the agreed resumption date. That should really be addressed because it doesn’t speak well of our league
Lodgexpress: And your advice to the up and coming Football players would be?
Abuchi: They should not bow to the pressures and difficulty of the present, they should keep their dreams alive and always remember why they decided on becoming professional football players. They should stay focused, committed and disciplined but above all, put God first in all they do
Lodgexpress: How would you best describe Okeke Abuchi?
Abuchi: He’s jovial, he’s down to earth, humble, determined, fighter and hard-working
Lodgexpress: And where do you visualize yourself in three years time?
Abuchi: I see myself already established in my club outside the continent of Africa
Lodgexpress: And your parting shots to your fans?
Abuchi: I must really say thank you for all your support and love, it means so much to me. Thank you for not giving up on me, I love you all and stay blessed
Lodgexpress: Thank you Abuchi Okeke, it’s a wrap.
Correspondent: Faith Mbadigha