My Parents Threatened To Send Me To The Village Because Of Football – Chiejine


Growing up
It was tough growing up with parents who wanted their children to become   doctors, lawyers, and  engineers.  My parents never wanted me to venture into football. They believed that football is for men, not for women. It was so bad that they had to consult a doctor to  ascertain whether I’m capable of bearing  children.

They were also worried that I would grow muscles which will affect me in future. My parents were  hard on me. It was a very difficult task. It got to a point where they threatened to send me to the village until the doctor assured them that I was medically okay. But I thank God, even as an ex-player; you won’t even know I had played football before now.

Today, I’m married with children and did not grow muscle. I got married in 1992. I started playing for  the female national team in 1991, during the first female World Cup that year. Even after I got married, I  was in Sweden and United States for the World Cup. I didn’t have any problem. In a nutshell, I’m what I am  today because of football.

Goalkeeping
I played outside right, which is number seven during my time. During one of our matches,  they introduced me into the game about five minutes to the end of the match, and I wasn’t happy about it. Then, the coach later advised me to start training as a goalkeeper because of my height.

I wondered where I was going to start from but maybe, that’s how God wanted it because about two to three weeks after, I started training, in the post for my team at a Lagos State competition. And before I knew it, I was adjudjed one of the best goalkeepers. I got into the national team and played from 1991 to 2006 before I retired and ventured into coaching.

Comparing the experience as a coach and a former player

When I was a goal keeper,  I used to receive instructions from my coach. But now that I’m a coach, I find my self imparting my experience and skills to the players. If I hadn’t been there, it would have been tough impacting on my players.

When I give them instructions, I tell them to do it this way or the other way, they understand me. For some players, I’m a role model; they want to be like me. I also enjoy what I’m doing and find it easy to get along with the players.

Life  as  a coach

So far, I have been undergoing training and trying to learn some new things.  I also brought  new tactics into the game and imparting it on the young ones.  I’ve also attended several coaching courses within and outside  the country to improve upon my coaching skills.

Daily beauty routine

I like make-ups  a lot . I always use cleanser on my face  before taking my bath. When I make up, people tend to see  a different Ann and I like it when people compliment me especially  on what I wear.

Secret of my looks

Happiness and constant exercises is the key. As a coach I lead by example by minimising and watching what I eat. Sometimes, I eat once or twice in a day. And at night, I don’t eat heavy foods. I eat a lot of fruits and I like smiling all the time. I believe these are the things that keep me going.

Fashion

My love for fashion and style is boundless. I love  designer wears. Fashion has been part of me and I love it with a passion. The fact remains that I like to be different and like to be noticed whenever I dress.

People compliment my good look wherever I go. In essence, I dress to make a difference. And most of the time, I wear clothes that are not too common. I also have passion for designer shoes, bag and perfume.

Love for native attires

I love native attires a lot. I like the big gorge wrappers and blouses.

Men and I

Of course, men admire me but the most important thing, is knowing your status as a married woman.

When I get admired by men, the only thing I do is to appreciate them and no intimacy.

Combining coaching and family

It’s all about being focused and having an understanding husband. My husband  knows what I love doing. So, he doesn’t see any need to stop me from doing what I enjoy doing. It’s not easy but he understands me. Out of hundred men, you can only get one. If I’m going for camping, I cook different pot of soup and stew and store them in the fridge to keep them going for sometime.

By December, I will be celebrating twenty years of marriage. I have a  loving husband and children(two boys and two girls) who  understand why I have to be away from home for long. That is why when I get back, I don’t like going out. I spend all my time with them whenever I’m   not working.

Life outside coaching

I like singing and dancing. I also unwind with my husband.

Best meal/fruits

I like fried plantain and eggs. I also like garden egg, paw-paw and pineapple.
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