He is unarguably Nigeria’s finest center referee of the last decade. However, injury has been a major stumbling block to his career as he has struggled to remain relevant in a sport he loves so passionately.
Following that unfortunate ankle injury he sustained in December 2017, Ferdinand Udoh watched as his illustrious career seem destined for a premature end.
After almost two years on the sidelines, Ferdinand is on his way back following a successful surgery at the Emirates integra and Surgical center, Alrazi complex in Dubai.
Supervised by professor Nicola Maffuli, a popular surgeon, renowned for his many successes in more complicated situations like this, Ferdinand thanked Nigerians, especially the honourable sports minister Solomon Dalung for standing by him in his moment of needs.
Speaking exclusively to footballlive.ng the Akwa Ibom state born referee recounted his ordeal before, during and after the surgery.
“I have gone through the most difficult moments of my career, I have felt the pains of disappointments and the anguish of failures. I have lived with the agony of watching from the stands as my colleagues run with the whistle in their mouths. In all those years 17months of uncertainty, I kept faith, believing that someday, I will bounce back and that day has finally come.
Today I am happy because the surgery was successful and I have started rehabilitation.
Hopefully in the next three to six months, I will be back doing what I love to do best.
Permit me, to use this medium to thank the Nigeria sports minister Solomon Dalung. That man has shown that he is a father and leader. He was always talking with me on phone. He encouraged me and supported me.
I also want to thank Honourable Nduka Irabor. He has always been good to me and he showed up again when I needed him.
Nigeria Referees Association president Tade Azeez also played his part in putting smiles on my face. I will never forget these good people even as I appeal for more support to complete my rehabilitation and get back to full training any moment soon.
I cannot forget my friends the media guys, referees, family and friends who stood by me during these difficult moments he concluded”
Nigeria football federation president Amaju Pinnick has promised to come to Udoh’s aid in the coming days as the NFF dont want to be left out from the podium of appreciation.
Adjudged as Nigeria’s best center referee for four good years, between 2014 to 2017, Ferdinand has every reason to give thanks as he begins his gradual journey back to officiating, after three years in the wilderness of uncertainty. Source of story wale Ajayi.