Exclusive Video: Anthony Ujah reveals how he was almost forced to quit football by his Dad


Nigeria striker Anthony Ujah has revealed he was close to quitting the game because of pressure from his father for him to attend a university.

Ujah, who now plays for Liaoning Whowin in the Chinese Super League, having previously played for Werder Bremen in the German Bundesliga, admits it could have been a different story as he was given an ultimatum by his father, who wanted him to go to the university instead. Ujah told

“I am from a very educated family. My father is very educated and he made sure we all got educated. I am the last child of five children and the only one who refused to go to University, I chose to go another way, I chose to follow my dreams,” he began.

“My dad gave me a one-year ultimatum and if I don’t show something from football I had to go back to school but with the help of God, I got my first professional contract after six months and I was able to prove to him that I can achieve something with football.”

It may look easy on the surface – what he has achieved – but Ujah, who celebrates his 27th birthday today, admits he has also been lucky, beyond just having the talent to play the game.

“I feel very lucky,” he said of his life and career. “When I look at every step I have taken so far, I was not always the best not even when I was playing street football in Nigeria.

“Somehow God keeps pushing me forward. So I will say its just the favour of God because when I say it’s about training or hard training whatever, there are people who train ten times more than I do but it’s not about training. It’s just about being favoured and get that blessing from God.

“I can only give all glory to God. I can not give all glory to any human being responsible for my success.”

And while being a professional football entails a lot of hard work and dedication, Ujah says he doesn’t joke with his rest and says sleeping helps him recover fast from the stress of playing the game.

“I sleep a lot, I try to relax as much as I can because regeneration for me is a very important part of football.

“I try to spend a lot of quiet time alone so I can reflect. I try to go away from the mobile phone and al electronic gadgets sometimes just to have a quiet time. It’s time for me to recharge my batteries. It’s much more important for me to rest a lot. I also try to spend time with my loved ones and friends.”


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