“Stay away from slay queens” – Ibrahim Sani Daara advises West Ham United’s Mohammed Kudus

Mohammed Kudus has returned to England to properly start his career with West Ham after the heroics for Ghana during the international break.

Even though he signed for the Hammers and played some few minutes just before the break, he is now going to get the full experience of playing in the EPL

Here are my 16 points of advice for Kudus to be successful with West Ham and in England:

WORK HARD AND LISTEN TO COACHES – Work hard in training and give 100% effort. Listen to your coaches. Their experience will help you develop.

HEALTH AND REST – Take care of your body with proper nutrition, hydration, and rest. Your physical health is crucial. Maintain peak physical condition to cope with the demands of the league. Consistency in fitness is key. Prioritize injury prevention through proper warm-ups, cool-downs, and recovery routines. This will help you adapt to the more physical, faster style of English football compared to other leagues.

WATCH YOUR VIDEOS – Use your free time to watch footage of your matches to identify strengths and weaknesses.

MARRY EARLY – One of the pitfalls for several ex-African footballers is excessive womanising. Those that married early stayed grounded and were successful. Good examples are Abedi Pele and Stephen Appiah.

SLAY QUEENS – Avoid them. Divorce rates for Ghanaian footballers when they retire is high because the fame and fortune is gone. The mindblowing photos of women on social media doesn’t show their true character. You must know that most of them are attracted to you because of your fame and perceived fortune. Ask yourself this: ‘Will this woman be interested in marrying me if I was staying in Nima and playing for Accra Hearts of Oak in the Ghana Premier League?’ If the answer is ‘no’ then that’s your red flag.

FAMILY FIRST – You are already doing this – stick to it. You are already taking good care of mum, dad, granny, uncles and your brothers and sister. Sending mum and granny to go on the Hajj pilgrimage recently is completely praiseworthy. Taking mum to watch your matches in Europe is a masterstroke. They are the only ones that put everything on the line for you and they will stand by you in all circumstances.

FINANCIAL RESPONSIBILITY – Manage your finances wisely. A lot of Ghanaian footballers go broke a few months after retirement. Invest in real estate as football careers are short.

PRAY HARD – It might feel at the moment that the whole world loves you. The reality is that others want to see you fail as they are jealous and envious of your successes. Prayer is your shield. Your mother’s nightly prayers for you are golden. You must also continue to dedicate yourself to Allah and pray consistently for success and guard you against evil. Read the Qur’an and give charity to the needy. Sadaqa is the biggest shield against evil.

LISTEN TO GOOD ADVICE – The best people around you are ones who will see something wrong and point it out to you.

STICK TO FOOTBALL – You are not a music star or a fashion icon.

HUMILITY – Stay humble and keep grounded despite the fame and money.

PARTYING – By all means enjoy yourself but avoid off-field issues like partying excessively and maintain a good image.

FOLLOW RULES – Follow rules set by the club regarding social media, diet, curfews etc. They protect you.

MEDIA SCRUTINY – Deal with scrutiny from fans and media maturely. Develop resilience to handle setbacks and criticism, as football can be challenging.

COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT – Get involved in community activities in England, #Ghana and #Nima and give back to the local community and #westham fans.

REPRESENT GHANA PROUDLY – You are a role model to youth back home and don’t forget where you came from. Do charitable projects in Nima and Wa. Remember @right2dream that trained you. And remember you can’t solve all of society’s problems. Just do your best.

Your success in England will inspire not just young footballers but young people in Nima, Ghana and across Africa.

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