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Kumbur Amia: Jay Jay Okocha’s anointed successor

Born on February 5, 1994, the teenager who hails from Kwande Local Government Area of Benue State was instrumental to his team’s impressive run in…

Born on February 5, 1994, the teenager who hails from Kwande Local Government Area of Benue State was instrumental to his team’s impressive run in the 2010 Shell Cup competition. He was the pillar of the team as he ensured that his school remained in the competition and also played in the finals against all odds. Indeed the odds were daunting as on more than two occasions, members of his team were screened out leaving only the required seven players for his side to do battle against other team’s who had full complement of their members. Even as it appeared like mission impossible on several occasions, he continually propelled his side to resounding victories which took them to the Cup finals.

The immensely skillful player was the cynosure of all eyes as he dazzled fans with mesmerizing football skills. Although not endowed with physical strength, he is blessed with high football sense. On and off the ball, he is a delight as he continually conjures breath taking moves which keep soccer fans on the edges of their seats. Except for those who have watched him play, this will certainly sound like an exaggeration.

It is therefore no surprise that at the end of the final match of this year’s Shell football competition between Benue State and Imo at the Liberation Stadium in Port-Harcourt, the legendary former Super Eagles captain, Austin Jay Jay Okocha had no option than to publicly attest to the teenager’s football prowess. He is said to have confessed that throughout his interaction with the upcoming generation of footballers, he has never come across a youth who is an embodiment of almost all his football skills. Without mincing words, he instantly anointed the player for greatness in the round leather game.

Even before he was anointed by Okocha, the man saddled with the responsibility of producing the next national U-17 football team, Coach Monday Odigie had spotted the player right at the quarter finals of the Shell Cup.

Those who have watched this player will be in a better position to appreciate why Jay Jay Okocah could not conceal his love for him. When this reporter visited the team’s training camp, an official of the team who does not want his name in print confirmed that the player is the next Jay Jay Okocha.

This is the brief story of the young boy who is destined for greatness according to Okocha who cannot be faulted when it comes to identifying a talented footballer. Ordinarily, any player anointed by one of the most successful players to emerge from Nigeria should feel on top of the world but Kumbur’s case is slightly different. He is excited but not distracted by Okocha’s accolades.

A humble boy from a humble background, the player is still oblivious of what he is endowed with. Even if he is going to be the next Jay Jay, he seems not to know. All he knows is that he likes playing football and it is just want he enjoys doing.

For now, Kenneth Kumbur Amia has only one ambition- to make the national U-17 team. He is not ready to be distracted by comparisons with great footballers and the usual interest from local clubs whenever a new star is born.

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