Super Eagles and Leicester City midfielder, Wilfred Ndidi, has revealed how his small frame, almost prevented him from being selected for John Obuh’s U20 Flying Eagles squad in 2013.
The midfield battler who was 16 at the time, would go on to make the final squad due to his talent and officials who believed in his ability, despite initial rejection by head coach, Obuh.
Ndidi revealed this early experience on the Out of Home podcast.
“When I got to the U20 team, I was seeing these guys. They were professionals who were already playing in the league. They were strong when compared to myself, a skinny boy coming from an academy to the U17’s and now to the U20’s,” Ndidi said.
“Immediately they saw me, they were like ‘Who is this small boy?’ It was just all over my face that who is this small boy. It was so tough that my roommate would sleep on the bed and I would sleep on the ground.
“I wasn’t intimidated because I knew what I was there to do and not to make friends. Everything worked in my favour because I trained with older people growing up in the barracks.
“I only started training with my age mates when I was in the Nath Academy, so I was already used to training with bigger guys so I wasn’t scared. To me, it was just normal.
“You might be stronger than me, but I won’t give you my body to overpower me.”
Wilfred Ndidi has gone on to make thirty-six (36) appearances for the Super Eagles of Nigeria, since making his debut in 2015 in a friendly against the DR Congo