Diamond Football Academy has really setup a pace for others to follow; grooming young and talented kids into world recognized players. Today is an insider in the life of the World Cup Winner and Bonze Boot Winner Samuel Chukwueze. The 17 year old star gave the DiamondTV and opportunity for him to share things about his life and his career.
DiamondTV: Welcome Samuel Chukwueze and thank you for giving us the opportunity to have this exclusive interview with you today
Samuel Chukwueze: You are welcome, the pleasure is all mine.
DiamondTV: Samuel Tell us a little about yourself?
Samuel Chukwueze: Ooops! My name is Samuel Chukwueze Chimerenka, I hail from Ugba Ibeku in Umuahia North LGA of Abia State. I was born on 22nd of May 1999 and bred also in Umuahia. My both parents are from Ibeku, I have two younger siblings a boy and a girl, am the first child. My Dad is Minister of God and my Mum is a Nurse, We are a Christian family.
DiamondTV: Which school did you attend?
Samuel Chukwueze: I attended Government College Umuahia and later finish in Evangel Isiochi.
DiamondTV: When did you fall in love with football?
Samuel Chukwueze: I fell in love with football at the age of 5 having our Nigerian legend Pa Jay i.e Jay Jay Okocha display such a tremendous skill in TV gave me so much fantasies in life such as playing alongside with him (laughing..hahahaha) I believe that really made it a childish taught but yet that gave me an inside of a dream in which I had to accomplish in life.
DiamondTV: Which other academy or grass root club did you play before joining Diamond Academy?
Samuel Chukwueze: Well, I played for Future Hope U-8 & U-10 I then moved to New Generation Academy and played for a little while before I then came to Diamond Academy where it all began.
DiamondTV: What have been your experiences since you joined the club over the years?
Samuel Chukwueze: To be honest with you, Diamond Football Academy changed my life; they gave me purpose and the mentality that I can do it. I could remember so vividly the very day I was to resume training with them, it was a difficult moment for me because am new, I can’t forget our Team Manger Mr. Victor Apugo who interceded on my behalf that got me a trial start which I gave everyone a beauty of football so I will call it. I joined Diamond in the late 2012 and they transformed me into something that I myself was proud and confident about. I got to know some ethics of football, its rules and conduct. I was included as part of the Academy squad that went to Portugal for a tournament which we won and I was the highest goal scorer in that competition.
DiamondTV: How does it feel being part of a major outing win?
Chukwueze: Actually it was a new dream for me, new experience, new atmosphere, new environment and my first new Competition win. Lol
DiamondTV: How did you feel lifting the world cup and becoming the 3rd highest goal scorer in the competition?
Samuel Chukwueze: It was breathe taking, I couldn’t believe it, it was unimaginable, splendid in-fact it is my biggest achievement so far, although I still have my target in future to hit. It was a very special day in my life that I cherish so much especially bring something home to over 200 million Nigerians who has been rooting for us there in Chile. It made me proud of my country and making me to believe that we can still do more.
What is your Target as a PRO player?
Samuel Chukwueze: To Win The African Best Player Award
DiamondTV: Who was your best Academy Teammate?
Samuel Chukwueze: My best teammate is Kelechi Nwakali, I call him family, it’s true that my biggest fan is my family, they motivates and keeps me going and also source of my inspiration apart from God. I for sure do see kelechi as one. We were close through the Academy, down to Portugal and the National Team as well. He is an amazing friend and family.
DaimondTV: Who is your Role Model?
Samuel Chukwueze: My role model is Adjien Robben, He is a great player and one of the best natural left footers in the world. Am a left footer and am his No1 Fan.
DiamondTV: Is there any other thing you would like to add about your experiences in Diamond Academy:
Samuel CHukwueze: (Exhales…) Diamond Football Academy isn’t just any football academy; she is like a family who do take care of their own. They do have wonderful instructors who did mould players into want they least expect themselves to be. Evangelist Tony has been a major instrument to my style of play; he teaches not just how to play but how to influence the game with your lifestyle. He believes in Loyalty, Respect, Good Behavior and discipline that I still learn from him. Coach “Man to Watch” as we do call him, has impacted greatly in my life among other technical Team and Our Team Manger Mr. Victor Apugo someone who is close to a father to me. Diamond Football Academy is a family I can never forget in my life and am proud to pass through here.
DiamondTV: If you are to describe Diamond Football Academy in one word what will you use?
Samuel Chukwueze: I will say “Visionary” because they anticipate for the future from now.
DiamondTV: Are there any departing words you would like to give?
Samuel Chukwueze: Thank you so much for the opportunity given to me Diamond, especially to our President Mr. Martin I. Apugo for his endless support and care over the years, he is indeed a philanthropist and father for all. I want to say thank you to the whole coaching team it’s really been an honor working with all of you and to my fellow academy players never stop believe and just keep doing what you do and you will definitely see a light at the end of the tunnel.
DiamondTV: Thank you so much for your time here at the studio, we will keep in touch.
Samuel Chukwueze: Thank you, pleasure is all mine.