Super Eagles Midfielder, Wilfred Ndidi reveals that he used to hawk groundnuts and wash windscreens, the rough path he took on his journey to success.
Onyinye Wilfred Ndidi (born 16 December 1996) is a Nigerian professional footballer who plays for Premier League club Leicester City and the Nigeria national team as a midfielder.
Wilfred Ndidi, who is a key component of Gernot Rohr’s team to the 2018 FIFA World Cup, revealed that he sold groundnut and washed windscreens in Lagos before he became a professional footballer.
Wilfred shared his experiences and he said: “Sometime ago, I was a jack of all trade while my mum was selling, I’ll go and hawk for her.
I sold different types of fruits and not even only fruit; I sold peppers, tomatoes, I sold groundnuts. Sometimes, they call me ‘omo elepa’.
That is groundnut boy. And then sometimes, when I finish selling, I do a quick one for myself.
I go for wiping glass of cars, cleaning and If I see I’m not making money, I can quickly go to buy pure water and start selling there.”
Asides the selling of foodstuff, Ndidi did other jobs while hawking in traffic and revealed that it was to purchase a new pair of boots.
He said, “My best, I would say was making N3000. I finished selling so quick. I went to do the wiping thing for myself, just four different things I did in a day.
“I was so happy going home because I was saving to buy my football shoes.”
Grass To Grace
It has been revealed that Leicester attacking midfielder, Wilfred Ndidi, is now on a weekly wage of 50,000 pounds, which comes down to about N96 million a month.
“Ndidi is on a monthly salary of about N96 million,” a source who is familiar with the transfer of the defensive midfielder to England in January said.
Ndidi is yet again another classic grass-to-grace story as life was tough when he started out at the Ikeja Cantonment in Lagos, where he had to squat with a junior officer, according to reports.
And when he moved to Belgium, he also stayed up with a foster family to cut costs and integrate himself quickly into the way of life in that European country.
Leicester City splashed over 17 million pounds to sign Ndidi, 20, from Belgian club KRC Genk.
Ndidi has come a long way since his formative years and is regarded as one of the best defensive midfielders in the World Cup, and will be expected to play a key role for the Super Eagles at the 2018 FIFA World Cup.
“I was really doing so many things but it was okay.”
Ndidi was part of the Nigerian youth setup during his time at Nathaniel Boys of Lagos.
In May 2018 he was named in Nigeria’s preliminary 30-man squad for the 2018 World Cup in Russia.