Kingsley Michael is still celebrating his recent signing at Bologna of Italy, and says his immediate target is to hit the ground running and quickly play himself into the Serie A club’s main team.
In this interview with owngoalnigeria.com, the new kid on the block, who recently turned 18-year old, said he is happy to sign a five year deal with the club and aims to make a huge impact within the shortest time possible.
Michael, who was in the Golden Eaglets’ squad that won the FIFA U-17 World Cup at Chile 2015, and played in the ill-fated Flying Eagles’ team that failed to qualify for the 2017 Africa Youth Championship (AYC) spoke on his favourite position on the pitch, his role model, favourite shirt number, favourite Nigerian player, the meaning of his nickname ‘Kakatrigger’ and much more….
OGN – Congratulations on penning a five-year deal with Bologna.
KM – Thanks, I will like to thank all my coaches from my grassroot teams up to the national U-17 and 20 and all the youth teams I have played for. They are moulded me into who I am today.
OGN – At what age did you decide to take football as a career?
KM – As early as when I was 13 years old, and my father was very supportive of my desire to become a professional footballer, I’m happy because so many people share same dream but never made it this far.
OGN – Where will you say you had your first breakthrough?
KM – Few years ago before the U17 World Youth Championship, I won the best player at a youth tournament in Croatia. It fired me up and from then on I knew I’m on the right path.
OGN – Which role is your favourite on the pitch?
KM – I love playing in the midfield, although I have played on the wings as well. To be specific I prefer playing just behind the main striker.
OGN – Which jersey number is your favourite?
KM – I love jersey number 8, It’s my favourite to be honest but I have won other shirt number during my young career.
OGN – You wore jersey number 6 at the World Youth Championship , why did you not wear your favourite number 8.
KM – Number 8 was taken and 6 was the number I wore when I won the Most Valuable Player (MVP) at a youth tournament in Croatia. So I felt positive picking it up.
OGN – Who is your role model?
KM – Brazilian super star Kaka is my role model. I style my game like his and as a matter of fact he is the reason why I love the number 8 jersey because he also wore the number.
OGN – Who is your favourite Super Eagles Player?
KM – Ogenyi Onazi, I call him Bros. It’s a pity he is no longer playing in Italy else I would have turned his house into mine. I admire his simply nature and his willingness to always motivate young footballers like myself.
OGN – Which nickname do you prefer, Kakatrigger or Wacko Jacko?
KM – Kakatrigger of course. Kaka as my mentor and trigger because I can pull the trigger, I mean shot from any angle as long as the opportunity to shoot presents itself on the pitch.
OGN – Which game is your toughest so far?
KM – I will say the game against Brazil at the World Youth Championship, we won but it wasn’t easy at all. It’s never easy playing against Brazil at any level.
OGN – Which goal is your favourite?
KM – The goal I scored against Brazil, As in I surprised myself not just my coach. My motto is if a team proves difficult to break down, you have to produce something special, and that goal will forever remain in my mind. Like Kaka, I pulled the Trigger (Laughs)
OGN – Pick the members of your U17 team that you believe will fit into the Super Eagles right now?
KM – Tough question because we are all talented in our different ways. I just hope I won’t have enemies from this but I base on their career so far, Orji Okonkwo here at Bologna, Kelechi Nwakali at Arsenal and Wolfsburg Victor Osimhen who is already in the Super Eagles are my top pick for now.
OGN – Finally, what inspired that statement of yours ” dem go hear word”?
KM – It started during the battle the Nigerian Army had against the insurgency. The Nigerian army which my father belongs to are putting them in check. So the word ” Dem go hear word”, means they will listen to the voice of reasoning and quit the act”.
OGN – Thank you for your time, and keep working hard.
KM – Bros, na now work start (The real work starts now) , dem go hear word (Laughs) . Thanks a lot
Keys – KM = Kingsley Michael, OGN = Owngoalnigeria.com
*Interview by Osas Mahawi