Victor Ndukwe
3 min readDec 19, 2022


It’s E for Efforts, always!

Hello there, it’s another one from Victor’s Vibe. To set the ball rolling, I’ll be drawing my reference from my experience as a football player.

You see what I did there? Look again!

Channelling the pump I got from Messi finally lifting the World cup trophy to something productive, I’ll be telling a story of my glory days as a young football talent.

It is starting like this…

Growing up as a kid in Lagos, I didn’t have too many options other than going to school and playing football. And boy, was I good at both of them?

I was so talented that not only was I once hired to go play a tournament at Ikoyi from Ijanikin where we lived, I was made the Captain of my local team — Wembley FC — coached by one Egbon adugbo (Street big bro) — Coach Shakiru.

Coach Shakiru was quite dramatic and had a funny accent whenever he speaks, making his pep talks quite comical.

On one particular game, I was bitching up a storm after my team conceded a goal from a costly mistake made by our central back — Sharafa.

I did a great deal of bitching and Coach Shakiru had finally had enough. So, he quickly called me to the sidelines and left me with a very important lesson that I still hold with me till date.

As I was still grumbling and screaming at Sharafa, Coach Shakiru beckoned on me shouting 'Victor!, he has cancelled the goal, the ref has cancelled the goal'
I speedily rushed to him looking all confused.

Coach Shakiru, playing dumb, kept shouting… 'the ref has cancelled the goal!'
I got frustrated and I shouted back at Coach Shakiru as I ran towards him…

'Coach?, the ref can’t cancel the goal, he already called it a goal!'

Coach Shakiru instantly became calm and, placing his hand on my shoulder, said to me...

"That’s right, Victor. He never will change his call. He never will. So you’re better off shutting up and just playing this match."

I trudged back to the midfield with my tail between my legs, discouraged but understanding my coach’s point.

During one of our training sessions, we were practicing 'cross and nod' — and I remember Mayowa — my team’s central forward — not making any effort to hit the ball with his head but would rather complain it was either a little too high or a little too low. Coach Shakiru who was watching us train walked up to Mayowa and said in his funny accent…

‘Boy, I don’t know the style of football you’re playing, but back then when I played football, you had a much better chance of hitting the ball and scoring if you made efforts to swing at it.’

We all laughed cos we found it simple and sarcastic but whenever I remember these two events, I’m reminded of this important lesson:

There is no perfect situation, nor a perfect opportunity. If you need to achieve a goal, you need to put in the work, go for it and make efforts towards scoring.

Unfortunately, the society only rewards or praises outcomes and results which is a flaw on its own, but you should train yourself to joy in the process and reward yourself for trying in the first place — for no great result comes without first trying.

There's no result without efforts.

And if after trying, putting in the work, and efforts, the result or desired outcome does not come through, don’t waste time bitching around or sulking. Get back in there and play your game.

In summary, to be successful at any venture, you have to develop these two characteristics:

1). Move on quickly when shit doesn’t go your way and

2). Rather than wait for opportunities to somehow fly to you, go all out and put effort into grabbing it or creating one.