From Humble Beginnings to the Big Leagues, Enyimba’s Elijah Akanni Shared the Challenges he Faced Growing Up

Elijah Akanni

From humble beginnings to the big leagues, Elijah Akanni ‘s story is one of determination and sacrifice. In an exclusive interview with Futball Naija, he shared the challenges he faced growing up in Agbado, Lagos.

“Life was tough,” he said, reflecting on his journey. But that didn’t stop him from pursuing his dreams on the football field. Leaving his family behind, Elijah embarked on a remarkable journey to carve out a career in the beautiful game.

Ready to be inspired? Join us as we dive into Elijah’s story of resilience, passion, and unwavering spirit.

Elijah Akanni
Elijah Akanni

Childhood Memories

Born on August 22, 2001, in Lagos State, Akanni’s early years were marked by the challenges of growing up.

In a heart-to-heart conversation with Futball Naija, Elijah opened up about his humble beginnings in Agbado, Lagos. Despite facing tough challenges, he made the courageous decision to leave his family behind in pursuit of a football career.

Speaking about his childhood memories, the creative midfielder said; “I started playing football at a very early age. “I passed through a lot but I can’t explain because it was not easy for me growing up.” “However, I thank God for my life, for where I am today,” he continued.

“I lived at Agbado, I was squatting with my friends because things were not easy for me growing up.”

“I left my family because of football, to find a greener pasture for my football career and to help my parents too, because life was very hard with us in Agbado.”

Player Profile: Elijah Akanni

Full NameAkanni Sodiq Elijah
NicknameBig 10
Date of BirthAugust 22, 2001
Place of BirthLagos State
Preferred FootRight Foot
PositionAttacking Midfielder
State of OriginOgun State
Previous ClubMFM FC
Current ClubEnyimba FC

Football Journey

Elijah Akanni
Elijah Akanni

Akanni’s football journey began in Agbado, Lagos, where he lived with friends. Despite his parents’ initial resistance to his passion for football, Akanni left home to pursue his dream. His love for the sport became the source of joy in his life, propelling him to fight for his future as a professional football player. With a vision to achieve greatness, Akanni embarked on a journey that has taken him far, thanks to the grace of God.

Talking about his football journey, the Enyimba FC Number 10 said; “It all started in Agbado were I was living with my friends. So when I was going to school I love playing football, but my parents don’t were against it, so I left them because football is where I find my own joy.”

“After leaving my parents, I began having this vision of becoming a professional footballer, so I began to fight so as to become a great football player.”

“I am not there yet, I am still aspiring to go far. That being said, I thank God for my career, for how far God has brought me.”

What He Likes Most About Himself

“I love playing football,” Akanni Elijah said. In simplicity lies his passion and dedication to the beautiful game.

Biggest Achievement

Elijah Akanni
Elijah Akanni with the 2022/2023 NPFL Trophy.

“My biggest achievement is winning the Nigeria Premier League with Enyimba last season. “Another big achievement for me was finishing in 2nd place with MFM FC in 2017.”

Aspirations For The 2023/2024 NPFL Season

“I dream of winning the Nigeria Premier League back-to-back with Enyimba FC this season,” he said.

Biggest Influence in Football

Akanni’s football inspiration comes from Isco, the Spanish professional footballer and former Real Madrid player who now plies his trade as an attacking midfielder or left-winger for Real Betis. Isco’s style of play has significantly influenced Akanni’s approach to the game.

Elijah Akanni Style of Play

Elijah Akanni

“I play like Isco, and he is the one that inspires me,” says the creative midfielder.

Akanni’s style mirrors that of the Spanish maestro, emphasizing skill, creativity, and flair on the field.

Favorite Teammate

“Paso Dennis.” In the camaraderie of the game, Paso Dennis stands out as Akanni’s favorite teammate, reflecting the bond formed on the pitch.

How He Wants to Be Remembered

“I want to be remembered as one of the legends in the world of football.” Akanni Sodiq Elijah aspires to etch his name among the football greats, leaving a legacy that inspires the generations to come. With dreams of continuous success and contributions to Enyimba FC, his journey is a testament to the indomitable spirit of a rising football star.

NOTE: Remember: Your dreams are within reach too! Keep pushing forward and never give up. #Inspiration #DreamBig