Togolese soccer star and 2008 CAF Footballer of the Year Emmanuel Adebayor (28) is the first African sporting hero to feature in MTV Base Meets…with MTN, the youth empowerment TV series and multimedia campaign. The Togolese football star and newly signed Tottenham Hotspur striker will feature in MTV Base Meets Emmanuel Adebayor with MTN on 29 August.
MTV Base and MTN taped the exclusive interview with Adebayor at his luxurious home in Aka, Ghana, in the presence of MTV VJ Vanessa Mdee and five enterprising youths from across the African continent.
Adebayor, whose incredible football talent was famously spotted on the beach at the age of 15, meets with Nigerian student Nmamdi Ekwe (17), Sudanese management student and youth volunteer Nibrass Hassan (21), Ghanaian shoe entrepreneur Fred Deegbe (27), Zambian computer science student and soccer fanatic Mabanga Chisenga (21) and South African TV producer and presenter Sterre Mkatini (27).
Among the topics to be discussed by Adebayor and his eager young inquisitors are the importance of education, his initial difficulties at settling into his career in Europe, his relationships with football greats such as Shabani Nonda and Fernando Morientes, and his pride in being able to give back to Africa via his humanitarian work. Adebayor also talks movingly about his terrifying experience of coming under fire with the Togolese international soccer team at the Africa Cup of Nations in Angola in 2010.
On a lighter note, Adebayor discusses his love of dancing and promises to give the panellists and MTV VJ Vanessa Mdee a demonstration of his skills – but only off camera! Asked to share his philosophy on life, Adebayor says, “I think we all have to follow our hearts. To be successful…in life do whatever you want to do and be motivated to do it. If you’re doing it, you have to do it in a good way, there’s no point in doing it half way…”