She burnt my travel documents,’ Nigerian man recounts how mum ruined his football career

By Efosa Taiwo

A Nigerian man, identified as Naetochukwu, has shared a poignant story of how a tragic incident from his past ruined his chance at a promising football career.
Naetochukwu as he is known on X took to the platform to unfold his experience in response to a post discussing the journey of Tunde Onakoya, father of Nigerian Chess Master and founder of Chess in Slum, whose initial resistance to his son’s passion for chess eventually turned into pride.
Recalling a pivotal moment in his life, Naetochukwu revealed that at the age of 15, he was scouted to play football for a team in Melbourne, Australia, an opportunity that held the promise of transforming his life.



However, fate took a cruel turn one fateful Sunday when a domestic altercation altered the course of his future.
He recounted how, upon returning from church, his mother began yelling at him, and in reaction, he hissed at her.

Enraged by his actions, his mother, in an attempt to discipline him, seized his travel documents, soaked them in kerosene, and set them ablaze.

Naetochukwu could, however, salvage only his passport from the destruction.

Reflecting on the incident, Naetochukwu expressed the profound impact it had on his life trajectory.

He lamented that while he remains uncertain if his mother regrets her actions, he acknowledges that his life could have taken a vastly different turn if not for that moment of impulsive anger.
He wrote on X, “When I was 15 I got scouted to play for a team in Melbourne, Australia. Two weeks to leave for Melbourne. One faithful Sunday my mom came home from church and was yelling at me,so I hissed at her, she became furious (typical African mother)
Then she started yelling “is it cos you want to go abroad now that you are hissing at me?, come and go now let me see you” I have to tame you, before you become untamable” she stormed my room and took my travel documents, my Jerseys and boots I had bought in Nigeria and my boxes.

“She took kerosene and matches , went to the backyard and set everything ablaze. Immediately she lit the fire and threw it in her eyes cleared. I was only able to recover my International passport. Idk if she regrets it but my life could have changed for good if not for her anger.
I’m not saying this to pile on my Ma or anything but it changed the trajectory of my life, she has apologized and still apologizing and I don’t think I love her any less. I just hope I win big with something else cos the suffering that act has put me through can’t be explained.”


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