Allan Wanga the 'net-tearer' adapting to life in Sudan
|Wanga Allan Wanga of El-Merreikh celebrate his goal with teammate Said Mohamed after scoring against Banadir of Somalia during their Cecafa Kagame Cup 2014 match at Kigali Regional Stadium in Nyamirambo on August 11,2014.Photo/Stafford Ondego/www.pic-centre.com/CECAFA (RWANDA)|
Allan Wanga has had a dazzling career winning titles with almost all the teams he’s played for.
The 28-year-old Kenyan international won the Kenyan Premier League title with Tusker FC in 2007 as well as the Golden Boot (17 goals), clinched the Angolan Premier League with Petro Atletico in 2008 before lifting the Azerbaijan Cup with FC Baku in 2009. He then helped Sofapaka win the GOtv Shield (2010) on his return to KPL and inspired AFC Leopards to lift the domestic Cup last year.
Since his Sh8m mid-season move from the den to El-Merreikh, Wanga has been instrumental at the Sudanese giants propelling the Red Devils to Kagame Cup triumph and hit the headlines after his shot tore the goal net during a domestic Cup match.
Game Yetu’s Rodgers Eshitemi recently caught-up with the well-travelled striker to chat about his life in Sudan, aspirations and the origin of his nicknames, Wanga-musica and King Wanga.
Game Yetu: From AFC Leopards to El-Merreikh, have you adapted to life at your new club?
Wanga: I am coping pretty well and it didn’t take me long time to adapt at El Merreikh. My good understanding with the technical bench and players really helped me to settle down quickly.
Game Yetu: How’s the feeling when you scored the match winner on your debut against Al Hilal Omdurman?
Wanga: For me it’s just but an amazing start. I was very happy with the goal and felt even greater to have helped my team bag the maximum points. I am a striker and my work is to score, with seven goals already I think I am enjoying my best form ever.
Game Yetu: El-Merreikh are just one point adrift of leaders Al Hilal, what are your Sudani Premier League title chances?
Wanga: I think the title race will go right down to the wire. But my target is to win the remaining two Cups with my team. That would be good for my CV.
Game Yetu: You have been described in the Sudanese press as the net-tearer striker, who scares the goalkeepers. Is it true your shot tore the net?
Wanga: Hahahahaha. Yeah, I took a shot that tore the net, but didn’t even realise until I watched a replay ....It was one of my best goals as it sent us to the finals of the Cup final after beating Al Shendi.
Game Yetu: What’s the comparison between KPL and SPL?
Wanga: Sudan are quite a head of Kenya, but I believe with time we will be there.
Game Yetu: How does it feel to have won the Kagame Cup barely a year after inspiring Harambee Stars to clinch the Senior Challenge Cup?
Wanga: I want to thank God for the far he’s brought me and I am happy to have this record.
Game Yetu: Do you really miss AFC Leopards?
Wanga: I miss AFC big time. It’s a team that I loved playing for and it will always remain in my heart.
Game Yetu: But Leopards have been a shadow of their former self. What do you think is the problem and what advise can you offer?
Wanga: This season has not been the best for AFC. After losing me and Were (Paul), they brought in a couple of players, but they’ve not been able to gel quickly with the rest. For the good of the team, the management should try and maintain this squad for next year. Although Gor are favourites to retain KPL title, GOtv is AFC’s to lose.
Game Yetu: And where is the origin of King Wanga and Wangamusica names?
Wanga: Hehehe I think all of them came from my entertaining goal-celebration dancing styles. I saw the passion Ingwe fans had and I thought of a way to enjoy those great moments with them. I came up with those dances whenever I scored and they ended up nicknaming me. That’s part of my fond memories at AFC.
Game Yetu: You withdrew from the Harambee Stars squad for Morocco friendly, due to club commitments. Do you think Bobby Williamson has what it takes to coach the national team?
Wanga: I’ve a crucial league match against Al Hilal next Friday that’s why I excused myself from the national team. But I am delighted to have been named in the team. Bobby is a great coach. He did well with Uganda and K’Ogalo, that tells a lot about his credentials.
Game Yetu: Football Kenya Federation recently submitted bid for the 2017 AFCON finals, what’s your take on that?.
Wanga: Winning the hosting rights would be the best thing that has ever happened to Kenya. It will be a platform to show the world the great talent we have.
Game Yetu: What do you eat/take before a big game? How do you unwind after the match?
Wanga: On match day, I take light meals that are easy to digest and after the game I relax with my pals in my house.
Game Yetu: Do you have any specific rituals before a match?
Wanga: I don’t believe in rituals and wouldn’t entertain that at any given time and place. I believe in God.
Game Yetu: Is it because of your talent that you’ve made big moves or you are just a lucky guy?
Wanga: Talent is inborn and nobody can snatch it away from you. I’ve always been patient and make moves only at the right after serious consultations.
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