In the weekly Sportsration ‘star watch’, we caught up with defensive stalwart Olamilekan Jelili Akinbode.
The Bayelsa United FC defender told us about his journey from Vetland Grammar School to a Beninese club and clubs across Nigeria.
Here is the snippet from the interview with our star of the week.
Sportsration.com: Can we meet you?
Akinbode: My name is Olamilekan Jelili Akinbode. I am an indigene of Ogun State. I was born in Lagos on the 12th of May, 1994 and I am a footballer.
Sportsration.com: How did you start your football journey?
Akinbode: I started playing from my secondary school, Vetland Grammar School Lagos. I played for a club in the Benin Republic, played for Lagos State Polytechnic and clubs across Nigeria.
Sportsration.com: You played for a club in the Benin Republic?
Akinbode: Yeah, I did. For a season before the Benin Republic, football league was scrapped. And at the time my parents wanted me to further my education so I left the Benin Republic for Nigeria. I gained admission at Lagos State Polytechnic Ikorodu where I bagged OND in Banking and Finance.
Sportsration.com: You must be well read?
Akinbode: A bit. From Vetland Secondary School to Lagos State Polytechnic Ikorodu where I bagged my OND in Banking and Finance. You know education is light.
Sportsration.com: Your football career?
Akinbode: It is safe to say I started at Vetland Secondary School, Lagos, Université Nationale de Benin in Benin, Bolowotan FC, Akwa Starlet, El-Kanemi Warriors and now Bayelsa United.
Sportsration.com: So Bayelsa United? why not a NPFL club considering you played for El Kanemi Warriors?
Akinbode: I had an offer to sign for Insurance this season but one thing led to another and the deal fell through.
Sportsration.com: What are your plans for the future?
Akinbode: I played three seasons in the NPFL with El Kanemi Warriors, this is my second season with Bayelsa United in the NNL. Right now my dream is to play abroad, although I am open to scintillating offers from a top Nigerian club.
Sportsration.com: Any nickname?
Akinbode: When I was in school, my teammates gave me the names “Giran and Gattuso” because of my hard work and endurance. My head dey the game and e still dey there.
By: Tope Adefala