Akinsanmiro Ibafo Biography
After following the same path as Obafemi Martins, the retired Nigerian and Nerazzuri striker, the youthful phenomenon for Inter Milan, Ebenezer Akinsanmiro, seeks to make his way into the team’s starting lineup.
After playing for Beyond Limits in the Creative Championship and Viareggio Cup World Football Tournament in Italy last year, where his skill was identified, Akinsanmiro’s early career saw ups and downs before he joined Inter Milan.
The 18-year-old performed admirably at the competition, and Italian powerhouse Inter Milan signed him to his first European deal as a result of his great play.
With his transfer to Inter, he became one of a select group of Nigerian players to play in the premier European divisions.
It was not an easy journey to San Siro for Akinsanmiro, who was born in Ijora Badia, Lagos.
Akinsanmiro recently shared his motivational tale in a discussion, saying that his ambition of becoming a football player was almost cut short just before it began.
His foster parents did not want him to play football, so he needed his father’s assistance to get his career back on track.
When he came back, his shape and confidence had declined, so he decided to acquire a skill. He decided to become a barber, and he started a store in Ibafo, Ogun State.
Despite the fact that I spent a lot of my early years with my foster parents, Akinsanmiro said that they never encouraged me to play football.
“Every time I wanted to play football, they made it harder for me by adding additional housework for me to do.” I eventually stopped playing football, but I came home when my father insisted.
“Upon my return, I chose to pursue a career in hairstyling because I no longer had a passion for football.” However, my father and Future Bright Academy coach Kareem Yusuf persuaded me to pick up the sport again.
“At that point, I already had a store and was barbering, but neighbors asked my father why I wasn’t playing football once more. After a few months, my father encouraged me to pursue my dreams and promised to assist me. He did this by purchasing me boots. He also prayed for me.
The Beyond Limits academy, the youth team of the Ikenne-based Remo Stars NPFL team, soon took notice of Akinsanmiro after his reunion with coach Yusuf helped him rediscover his form.
From there, he was chosen to be a member of the team that excelled at the Creative Championship and Viareggio Cup World Football Tournament in Italy. It was then that scouts from the Italian powerhouse Inter Milan noticed him and later signed him to their youth team.
Obafemi Marins, a former Super Eagles striker, followed a similar path when he joined Inter’s junior team from Reggiana after excelling with FC Ebede in Nigeria.
“He (Martins) is a player I have always looked up to; he is one of the greatest strikers,” declared Akinsanmiro.
I naturally keep up with his history, and everything he has gone through gives me hope that there is light at the end of every dark tunnel, which motivates me to keep working hard and trying my best.
“I must continue to establish my worth, and I am prepared to do that. Although there are players who are better than me, I constantly remind myself that I will never quit.
Omosaye, Akinsanmiro’s father and a former football player, is happy that his son has taken up the sport.
“Football runs in our family, and I’m glad Ebenezer played the game as he grew older,” he said.
“In my early years of playing football, I was a winger who, thanks to my versatility, could play on both wings. Babatunde, his older brother, plays football as well. Sports have always been a part of his family because his mother was a sprinter.
“I’m pleased that he has also advanced his professional standing. He was also my first child to fly in an airplane. In my formative years, I also engaged in that. He is unique because of these qualities, and I think Inter will help him become anything he wants to be.
Ajibola Olumide, Ebenezer’s Beyond Limits coach, was also all praise for the gifted midfielder, whom he claims loves to control the game’s tempo.
“Ebenezer is a unique player with a different kind of skill set,” he claimed.
Akinsanmiro Ibafo plays with confidence and doesn’t slack off. You cannot intimidate or put pressure on Ebenezer because he is an elegant player.
“Akinsanmiro Ibafoestablishes pressure and controls the game’s tempo. He’s special because he has a mind of his own for his age, which I admire. Coaches that yell and try to impose strategies on his play do not get along well with him.