Renown football intermediary, Chibuoyim Martins Edeh has revealed some secrets to his success story.
The likeable UK based football intermediary considered as one of the best and most successful in the industry disclosed in an exclusive interview with Daily Sun that working with tested and trusted experts helped him rose to the top adding that it also helped him to free scores of Nigerian footballers from the bondage of slave contracts, which remains the bane of most African players.
” If those I’ve worked with say that I am one of the best or the biggest, then I give God the glory for all the praises. I am excited and honoured,” the former Rangers FC of Enugu assistant coach averred.
” I will not rest on my oars. I am motivated and will keep on working hard to ensure that I contribute my quota to the development of the round leather game in Nigeria.” Below are excerpts of the full interview.
Q-Briefly introduce yourself
A-My name is Chibuoyim Martins Edeh. I am the founder and CEO of Martins Damien’s Talent Management Limited. Basically we focus on managing footballers and basketball players . My passion for sports started during my secondary school days at Our Lord Shepherd International School, Enugu. After my graduation from the University of Liverpool, I got my license and floated my football management outfit. By the special grace of God I became a football licensed intermediary, better known as football agent in Nigeria.
Q-What inspired you to become a football intermediary?
A- In the year 2016, I worked as opposition scout analyst to Rangers international FC of Enugu as well as an assistant coach to Imama Amapakabo and together we won the league that season. After the season, we made some good transfers within the local league.
That move motivated me and when I left Rangers, I relocated to UK where I became a full-time licensed football intermediary. Besides that, it has been my dream to give back to the society by taking football to the streets. I want to encourage youths on the streets that through sports especially football, they can have a better future than roaming on the streets and committing crimes.
Q-Who are your foreign partners?
A- I have a lot of partners across the globe. By the grace of God I work with some of the best top shots in world football.I have partners in Europe, Asia and America among other continents. We are expecting some scouts from Olympic Lyon FC in France for our upcoming scouting programme in a few weeks time. Hopefully, as we usually do, we will fish out some young players and ship them to Europe after the programme.
Q- Nigerian and African players are under priced in Europe,what is responsible for it?
A-The major reason why these players are being under priced is because football academy owners are too desperate to take their players out of the shores of the country. They don’t have good negotiators. Instead of bringing experts and professional lawyers they prefer to do the negotiation by themselves and at the end of the day the foreign clubs in search of diamonds in Nigeria, will cash in on their desperacy and offer their players what we call slave contracts. I have taken a lot of players to Europe, working with right people have helped them sign mouthwatering contracts rather than slave contracts.
Q- As one of the most successful football agents in Nigeria and Africa as a whole can you reveal some of the secrets of your success to your numerous admirers?
A-First and foremost I have to give God the glory. You have to be ready mentally, physically and spiritually to face challenges that may come your way. You should also maintain your focus, focus on your dream and pursue it. Live it and sleep it everyday. In addition, you have to have a level of humility and work with the right hands. Most importantly, you must be honest and upright with your clients.
Q- Following the advent of football academies in all nooks and crannies of the country, how would you describe the future of Nigerian football?
A- I will say very very bright. Very bright because last year we exported up to fifteen players to top leagues in Europe. It’s good for our market that European scouts are trooping into Nigeria in search of the next diamond but not for peanuts.
That takes me back to what I said earlier on. Are our football academies ready to negotiate better for their diamonds? That explains why the Brazilian and South American players are made more valuable than our players. You see their players sold for 50 and 40 million Euros even when they have not been capped by their national teams.
Q-What’s your impression about Nigerian youth football?
A-my impression about Nigerian youth football is that we have raw and talented promising youngsters who are very good and skillful. I wish the government can help by sponsoring some of our coaches for refresher courses in order to make them become good football coaches to these youthful players.
This is because some of them lack some things from the grassroot that could later become a clog in the wheel to their career when they begin to play in the European leagues. However, if the coaches can teach them the basic knowledge of football, I don’t think they will struggle when they eventually move abroad for greener pastures.
The major problem we have in Africa is that the coaches are not good and knowledgeable enough to teach these players tactical awareness from the grassroot,that is why these youngsters have problems during the teething stage of their modest career.
Q-What is your message to Nigerian youngsters who are hoping on super football agents like you to make it?
A- My message to them is that they should bring their heads down, be disciplined, keep working hard and never give in.They should also be careful because there are a lot of deceitful agents out there. A lot of these agents are fake and unlicensed. They are just scouts working for agencies. But they will come and claim they are agents.
They prepare all sorts of funny documents and give to parents to sign and yet they are not licensed to do it.
They are just trying to work with someone’s license.
The players must be able to differentiate between the two categories so they wouldn’t put themselves in a big mess working with the wrong people.
If you want to know the genuine football agents visit NFF official web site, where you will find names of all the approved licensed agents in Nigeria.