For William Troost-Ekong, Defending Nigeria Doesn’t End On The Field.

July 8, 2019

Remember all those plans you had for when you turned 25? Fully furnished home, spouse, a child, maybe one or two master degrees in the bag? All that sound familiar to you?

Well, proving we all subscribe to a different Ye when it comes to quarter-century milestones is Nigerian Defender and Super Eagles vice-captain – William Troost-Ekong.

Ekong was born in the Netherlands to a mixed Dutch and Nigerian family. His international career began when he represented the Netherlands at the Under-19 and Under-20 levels before his Nigerian heritage gave him the opportunity to make a senior international debut for Nigeria in 2015.

(Sidenote: remember friends, don’t let anyone ever talk you out of getting a double passport for your children, okay?)

He has so far appeared in at least 120 club matches and has played in 43 games between 2018 and 2019 alone. Most recent of which was the AFCON match between Nigeria and Cameroon, where the God that answereth by fire prevented a repetition of the AFCON Finals of the year 2000.

We caught up with Troost shortly after the victory on Saturday, and asked among other things, what his image of an ideal Nigeria is. To this, he had a simple response, “A Nigeria that allows for equal opportunity.” He is currently putting his money where his mouth is towards making this a reality.

A husband and father, Ekong has an added feather to his hat, seen in his burgeoning role as a humanitarian.

As a member of the Common Goal initiative co-founded by Manchester United midfielder, Juan Mata — Troost has taken on the tackling of Neglected Tropical Diseases (NTDs) head on.

NTDs are a diverse group of infections identified by the World Health Organization (WHO) as diseases that predominantly infect low-income populations in tropical countries, causing a large burden of morbidity and some mortality. This is despite the diseases being treatable and preventable at very low costs. It includes such diseases as Dengue fever, guinea worm disease, soil-transmitted helminths to name a few.

About 120 million Nigerians are currently affected by the scourge, a number Troost considers unacceptable. In partnership with The END Fund and Common Goal, Troost has started a campaign to counter the scourge.

With the AFCON taking center stage, Ekong looks to return to NTD prevention and treatment advocacy, following the finals, where Nigeria will hopefully be making an appearance, come July 19, 2019. Here’s to achieving more goals both on and off the pitch!

Boyin Plumptre

Join The Conversation

Bring a friend.

You'll like this

September 9, 2021

Wilfred Ndidi and Kelechi Iheanacho have come a long way from their days as teammates in the Golden Eaglets, Flying Eagles and then the Super Eagles. The duo currently play for Leicester City, and helped the English club win their first FA Cup title in May. Here are six things the BFFs have in common: […]

Watch

Now on Zikoko

black girl leaning on the wall with curly hair
September 21, 2021

“Everyone from his fraternity ran away except him, and that was how he went down. He died on school grounds. Omo, I wasn’t myself for days. That was when I realized everything everyone said was true.”

8 Nigerian Women Talk About Their Experience With Cultists

Read here:

Recommended Quizzes

November 19, 2019

Regardless of what society has tried to tell us, enjoying sex is not something to be ashamed of. So, in a bid to celebrate our generation’s sexual agency, we’ve created a quiz that will accurately (again, keep your complaints to yourself) infer how many people you’ve spelt with. Try it out: 11 Quizzes For The […]

November 1, 2019

Twitter is buzzing right now, bringing a new conversation to the concept of cool vs not-so-cool, especially in relationships. If you’ve been thinking about how much of a red flag you are, why don’t you let this quiz help you decide once and for all?

October 30, 2019

Kemi Adetiba’s King of Boys movie got a lot of things right, especially casting, so yes, it was a monster hit. Now, we know you may not have put much thought to this, but the personalities of some of the characters closely match yours, and we would like to help you find the perfect match. […]

October 10, 2019

2019 is certainly Burna Boy’s year, but, if we are being honest, so was 2018. Since his transcendent mixtape, Outside, the afro-fusion star has refused to get his foot of our necks — dropping a string of fantastic singles and then capping it all off with his career-best album, African Giant.  So, in a bid […]

More from Creators

Zikoko - Fill in the black
September 11, 2020

Blackness is an identity that black people all over the world sometimes struggle with. The irony, however, is that even though we all share this identity, we experience it differently because of the countries we live in. Spurred by the many different experiences she has lived through as a black person in Nigeria, the UK, […]

Zikoko - Panaramic
September 7, 2020

You have probably heard of Queen Amina, but you may not know her story as much as you know about Wonder Woman, Black Widow, or even Aphrodite, the Greek goddess of beauty. And that’s a pity because Queen Amina was right there at the conference meeting when the guide for “Badass Female Hero” was written. […]

October 21, 2019

The only thing better than a success story is a success story in the making. That’s the feeling I got when I spent some time with Team Neptune, made up of the nine Nigerian teenagers who won InterswitchSPAK’s inaugural “Innovation Challenge.” InterswitchSPAK 1.0 Innovation challenge is just one segment of InterswitchSPAK’s National Science competition, organised […]

Watch

Trending Videos

Zikoko Originals

December 14, 2020
What happens when a group of chatty young Nigerians talk about things they're passionate about? You get Nigerians talk. A show that discusses very familiar struggles for the average Nigerian. From relationship deal breakers to sex education with Nigerian parents to leaving Nigeria, be prepared for a ride.
November 2, 2020
'The Couch' is a Zikoko series featuring real life stories from anonymous people.
October 26, 2020
A collection of videos documenting some of the events of the EndSARS protests.
June 22, 2020
'The Couch' is a Zikoko series featuring real life stories from anonymous people.
June 22, 2020
Hacked is an interesting new series by Zikoko made up of fictional but hilarious chat conversations.
June 4, 2020
What happens when a group of chatty young Nigerians talk about things they're passionate about? You get Nigerians talk. A show that discusses very familiar struggles for the average Nigerian. From relationship deal breakers to sex education with Nigerian parents to leaving Nigeria, be prepared for a ride.
June 2, 2020
Quickie is a video series where everyone featured gets only one minute to rant, review or do absolutely anything.
May 14, 2020
Isolation Diary is a Zikoko series that showcases what isolation is like for one young Nigerian working from home due to the Coronavirus pandemic.
March 12, 2020
Life is already hard. Deciding where to eat and get the best lifestyle experiences, isn't something you should stress about. Let VRSUS do that for you.

Z! Stacks

Here's a rabbit hole of stories to lose yourself in:

Zikoko amplifies African youth culture by curating and creating smart and joyful content for young Africans and the world.
X