By Scoop Reporter

MY footballing career has been an amazing journey but not an easy one, Zambia national soccer team’s prolific midfielder Emmanuel Banda has said.

Banda, who plies his trade with Djurgardens IF in Sweden, recounts that growing up in a Zambian setup, football was secondary to education with his mother strict than his dad in ensuring that he performed better in school.

This background made Banda strike a balance between playing football and school but that it was after completing Grade 12 that he wholeheartedly devoted all his time to his talent as the family did not have money to take him to college or university.

“It has been an amazing journey though not an easy one. Growing up in the Zambian culture, school must come first and this is the way I was brought up. Mom was quite strict though dad was flexible. Dad tried his best to make me balance between football and school.

“What prompted me to take up my career was that after I completed school, I did not have the chance to go to college or university. My mother did not have the means to support me and so, I knew I had a talent and I started to believe in myself and do what I love doing,” recounts Banda.

And commenting on the Corona Virus Disease (COVID-19) outbreak which has grounded all sporting activities across the world, Banda says the situation has been devastating but that he has continued training with his team with strict social distancing adherence because Sweden has not been locked down completely like other countries in Europe.

“The situation hasn’t been impressing. The cases keep on increasing. Even though most of Europe is on lockdown, that is not the case for us in Sweden. We still have normal activities. For us, we resumed training last week.

“We train as a group but trying by all means not to be at the same place at any time. It is really stressful at the moment. I try by all means not to be in contact with other people. I hope we can keep it safe for our families and others as well,” he advises.

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