Super Eagles reliable central defender, Kenneth Omeruo may be unsettled due to his inconsistent movement from Ado Haag to Chelsea now loaning him out to Middlesborough but the 2013 AFCON hero in this exclusive chat with DESMOND EKWUEME says it won’t shift his focus and determination to shine at Brazil 2014 FIFA World Cup. Excerpt…
You just moved from Holland to England and just at a time your fans were getting set to see you explode for Chelsea news of your loan move hit them, how do you react to this?
It is all for my interest and good. I don’t allow things to get at me. I try as much as I can to convert negative situations to positive. If Chelsea is giving out on loan may be it is prepare me for bigger responsibilities ahead. The club is not saying it does not need my services rather it is saying that I am a player for the future. I am young and they will certainly need me sooner than I think. More so, with some senior players already getting close to the end of their contract, I may be a possibly replacement for any of them later. That is the way I see these things.
But you were not thinking of a loan move when you signed from Dutch club, Ado Haag or were you?
First and foremost we must understand that Chelsea is a big club and a lot of factors come to play in decision process. Like I said earlier a few senior players will see out their contract which may be renewed or not, the club will have to look all these before deciding to keep a young player like me. I sincerely think it is to my interest to be at a club where I can be guaranteed regular action than at a club where I will be on the bench for the greater part of the season. Yeah, I may not have loan in mind when coming to Chelsea but I know that there are few senior players whose contracts are still running and I have to learn from them anyway.
Critics say that Jose Mourinho was not part of your transfer from Holland hence he is disposed to your loan to ‘Boro?
That is not true. He is like a father to me. He received me on arrival at the club and has been encouraging me ever since. For him, it makes sense to see me play at another club and in matter of time I will return to fit into the tasks he has for me.
But Mikel and Salomon Kalou were also young when he (Mourinho) signed them and kept them in the team, they were not loaned out, so why you?
Like I said Chelsea is a very big club and decisions are not just reached with ease. There are factors that are put into consideration. Perhaps the situations on ground during the time you just mentioned and now are not the same. At least Chelsea had not won the Champions League then.
What has Champions League got to do with what we are talking about?
It has a lot to do with it. The club is thinking and planning big. The manager is also working with a view to winning that trophy which is not new to him anyway. He has plans which could be the reason why he wants me to gather more experience at other English side before stepping in for the bigger job. He can’t be wrong.
But don’t you think you can play at Chelsea now?
When the manager thinks otherwise his decision stays. He is the expert and the boss. I am okay with his position. All I need is patience and to remain focused.
Let’s talk about Eagles, what is your mindset as we prepare for the World Cup in Brazil?
I cannot wait for the World Cup to commence. I am already in the groove. My spirit is high each time I remember that I have a date with history in Brazil.
You pulled your shoulder in South Africa during AFCON, how is the injury at the moment?
I had a successful surgery. I have been training at full trot ever since I was cleared fit to return to the pitch. I am as fit as fiddle.
Stephen Keshi says there is no automatic shirt for AFCON Eagles, what is your take?
It is good for the team. You have to fight to earn your place in the 23-man squad for the World Cup. It gives room for total commitment to work because in the end only the best and fittest can make it to the Brazil. I have no problem with that because he is the boss and of course he knows what he is doing.
Are you ready for battle for Brazil shirt?
I am one hundred percent ready.
If you make it to Brazil, you would have joined the exclusive class of players who have played in all categories of FIFA World Cup, how will this make you feel?
Why don’t you wait till I make it to the Brazil first then, we can talk about my feelings. Right now I don’t and cannot now how it feels until it comes to reality.
Your partnership with Godfrey Oboabona has tidied up Eagles defensive headaches, what is the secret of your smooth partnership?
Our secret if there is really any is God who has granted the spirit to work hard. However I must say that we are yet to tidy up the lapses in the defense because a lot of work still needs to be done like the coach will always tell us. We are still learning from the coach and I am so glad that he was an exceptional central defender so, he has been able to impact into us the things that made him the Big Boss during his playing days. Perhaps they are the really secrets of our success in AFCON.
Your final word
I pray to make it to Brazil and I appeal to my fans to join me in prayers.
Thanks for your time
It is my pleasure