We couldn’t party night after Eagles AFCON final defeat – Black


Nollywood actor, Abayomi Aderibigbe, professionally known as Yomi Black, in this interview with EBENEZER BAJELA talks about the disappointment of Super Eagles AFCON final defeat, his desire for Manchester United and more

How did you react to Super Eagles AFCON final defeat to Ivory Coast?

It was quite disappointing because every Nigerians wanted to see them win and it would have been good for the country as a whole and that’s why it was so painful and quite disappointing?

Were there plans to celebrate the trophy?

Yes, we had plans to celebrate the trophy if we had won. We arranged a get together and we had ‘suya’ prepared, we just wanted to party a little after the match but unfortunately the result changed the plan a bit. The mood in the house was different and some people even left before the game and they didn’t join in the party. But that is football and it is what it is.

Who would you say impressed you the most at the tournament?

I think the goalkeeper Stanley Nwabali did very well and it was obvious that Ademola Lookman also did very well, though he missed some couple of chances to score goals but he still had a very good tournament. For me, Lookman and Nwabali are my two best Eagles players at the AFCON.

Alex Iwobi was a victim of cyber attack by some fans after the AFCON. Do you have any word of encouragement for the Fulham midfielder?

First of all, I want to apologise on behalf of Nigerians and it is pretty unfortunate and unfair that he was attacked by some fans. Iwobi has Nigeria’s best interest at heart and no player wants to lose a final . I hope he can get over it and realise that it is not personal. I have been in this similar situation before and I can tell that it is not a place to be. It is very painful but he should toughen up and I want to say we are sorry Alex.

I hope Nigerians will learn a lesson from this because at the end of the day we will be held accountable for our actions and even as fans we should exhibit the attitude of sportsmanship. Losing wasn’t plan of the game but it happened and we should move on.

Did you play football as a child?

My mum wouldn’t allow me to play football because back then they believed there was any future in it. So, it was unfortunate that I didn’t play much of football as a child.

Are you saying there was no form of any civil disobedience from you all in the name of football?

(Laughs) Naturally I found myself in that situation because there are times I had to sneak out of the house to play football.

What are reactions whenever you come back from the field?

Football or sports generally is something that uplifting a man’s body and soul, it just help you feel excited and I think that is the right word. I don’t mind getting punished when I come back as long as I get the excitement that I want and you are not thinking too much about what happens when you return home because your mind is basically on the game.

Which is your favourite position?

I mostly played as a central midfielder.

Are you a fan of European football and which club do you support?

Of course I watch European football and unfortunately the club I support is Manchester United.

The Devils didn’t start the season but they’ve been picking results lately and Rasmus Hojlund has been in fine form. What do you make of the young player’s performance so far?

I remember we used to joke that Manchester United wanted to get a player like Erling Haaland and they went for Hojlund. A lot of people didn’t give him the opportunity but obviously he is a fantastic player and in his last five games he has scored five goals and registered two assists. We are excited about his performance and that of United but as a United fan you have to be cautious because the excitement can quickly be dashed.

Though, United are on the ascendency lately but we don’t want to have our hopes dashed.

Andre Onana was heavily criticised for his poor performance before he left for the AFCON but since he came back, he looks like a different player. How impressed are you with him of late?

I think Onana hasn’t just settled but we should wait and see because he is a good player with a lot of experience but settling in the English Premier League is not a walk in the park and for a goalkeeper it is not always easy.

Though United’s chances of winning any medal this season doesn’t seem likely but do you see them challenging for trophies next season?

Next season is still such a long time from now but hopefully they can do better because it is the dream of every fan to celebrate titles but it still depends on their activities during the transfer windows. We won Carling Cup last season but like I said I am very cautious about my excitement and optimism because of the competition in the Premier League.

Will you allow your kid to take part in sports even though you were sent same opportunity?

My son is currently swimming a lot. I coach him myself and definitely I will allow him to go into sports because sports build characters of kids and help them prepare for the future. It gives exposure and there are so many benefits getting into sports and that is one of the my reasons I allow my son to go into


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