Hoffenheim defender Kevin Akpoguma simply pledged his worldwide future to Nigeria. The previous Germany U-20 captain, who has a Nigerian dad and German mother, is presently in Austria for the Tremendous Eagles’ friendlies. In an Instagram interview with ng_supereagles monitored by KELVIN EKERETE, he talks on his want to play for the Eagles

Have you been to Nigeria earlier than?

I’ve. I believe once I was about six years previous. I can’t wait to return there once more.

As a defender, who do you mannequin your sport after?

I modelled my sport after Jerome Boateng once I was a youth participant. He was my function mannequin. I really like his type of play. He likes to get the ball from behind and all the time appears for very good passes. He’s not solely good at defending but in addition all the time making an attempt to play from the midfield and that’s what I like in his sport. Additionally it is the way in which I play now.

How would you describe your type of play?

My type of play is beginning build-ups from behind and stringing passes, lengthy and brief, and making an attempt to make the best selections. What I would like to enhance on is my head work offensively, I haven’t scored any objective within the Bundesliga but, so I’m wanting ahead to scoring there. I believe the individuals will see my sport within the friendlies and may make their very own selections. I don’t like speaking about myself.

Nigerian followers yearn for victory and good soccer on a regular basis. What’s your response to this?

The identical factor occurs at membership degree. In case you are taking part in in a crew, you need to get the most effective consequence. There have to be a winner and a loser in video games, however I believe the objective is all the time to win greater than dropping. That’s the motivation each time.

Are you able to sing Nigeria’s nationwide anthem?

I’ll study the nationwide anthem. Firstly, I’ve to study the brand new track I’ll sing for the gamers as a result of each new participant has to sing for the older gamers. However I’ll study the nationwide anthem for Friday.

Why did you resolve to play for Nigeria?

I made a decision to play for Nigeria as a result of I noticed a variety of potential within the nation. We have now prime gamers like Victor Osimhen, Samuel Kalu, Wilfred Ndidi, Alex Iwobi. These are prime gamers which can be taking part in in prime leagues and for those who put all of them collectively you’re going to have an amazing crew. For me it’s an enormous honour to play with these guys. It’s not as a result of I used to be born in Germany I’ll simply stroll into the crew. I’ve to work exhausting and show myself on the pitch. You’ll be able to’t simply stroll into the crew since you’re coming from Europe. It’s a must to practice exhausting, and that’s what I like concerning the crew. I’m actually blissful I made a decision to play for my fatherland. As a footballer, it’s all the time a dream to play on your nationwide crew. I performed for the German youth groups and now I play for Nigeria. Each participant needs to play in huge tournaments just like the Africa Cup of Nations, European Championships and the World Cup. I believe it is a very enormous honour and is nice to have these experiences to inform your children, how these competitions have been.

Why did it take you this lengthy earlier than deciding to decide on Nigeria?

To be a part of the crew or play for any nationwide crew, you must be prepared. The issue was that in my first season with Hoffenheim, I believe I carried out very properly after my mortgage from Dusseldorf. Perhaps some individuals don’t know that I had an harm in my neck area. My profession might have ended now. I used to be very blissful to be match so quick and are available again stronger and all the pieces was going properly on the membership and I simply wished to focus on that. That season we completed in third place and went to the Champions League. I simply wished to focus on my membership soccer. After six months, I acquired one other harm on my shoulder and wanted to function it. I believe in these intervals, I wouldn’t have been prepared for the Eagles, however after my shoulder harm, I stayed match and mentally. I believe I’m able to play for my nation. I considered making the swap in the summertime as a result of I had a variety of time to assume after which I made a decision to play for the Eagles.

What’s your relationship with Leon Balogun, who was additionally born in Germany and presently performs for the Eagles?

He’s serving to me lots right here. He helps me ask some questions, and typically once I need to clarify issues I can’t clarify correctly in English, he helps. It’s good to have him right here. It makes it a lot simpler. He is an efficient good friend and he is sort of a huge brother to me right here. He helps me lots.

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