A promising Nigerian teenage goalkeeper, Emmanuel James, has had his maiden training with the first team of Turkish Super Lig side Gaziantep.
Emmanuel James, a former Golden Eaglets pre-camp member, whose odyssey to Turkey started after featuring in a talents hunt competition in Keffi, Nasarawa State in 2020, was a sight to behold during the training session with the big boys of Gaziantep.
The 18 years old caught the eyes of the first team members and coaching crew of Gaziantep, as he kept out some balls from hitting the back of his net, to the delight of all at the training ground.
Just like he dazzled when he was discovered during a scouting mission in Nasarawa last year that earned him a trip to Turkey to seek greener pastures, it took James a little over five minutes of eye-popping cat-like displays to catch the fancy of Gaziantep first team squad at the training ground.
Since the talented youngster began training with the U-19 team of Gaziantep, no one has been in doubt that James was the next big thing to come out of Nigeria and this thinking prompted his inclusion in to train with the big boys of Gaziantep. And like kid primed for success, James came good in his debut appearance on the training turf to the delight of all.
It was gathered that the rookie goalkeeper seized the opportunity with both hands, not looking back, unwavering as he makes significant improvements in his quest to expedite his rise to glory.
An authoritative camp insider in Turkey told reporters that goalkeeper Emmanuel James, has been a surprise revelation, noting that the management and officials of Gaziantep are very impressed with his agility in goal.
It is recalled that James participated at the screening exercise of the Golden Eaglets ahead of Nigeria at the FIFA Goal project at the FIFA U-17 World Cup in Brazil but unfortunately did not make the final squad selected for the cadet tournament in the South American nation.
And rather unfortunately, the Golden Eaglets, without goalkeeper James, failed to fly into the quarter-finals of the tournament that they have won serially.