By Hussein Kiganda
Nigerian musical duo Paul and Peter Okoye, who make up P-Square, recently divulged the reasons behind their decision to abandon their aspirations of becoming professional footballers.
In an interview with CNN, the twin brothers revealed that they initially dreamt of a career in football while growing up in Jos, Plateau State in Nigeria, but they eventually found their calling in the world of music.
According to Paul, he was a goalkeeper, while Peter played alongside former Chelsea star Mikel Obi in the Pepsi Academy in Nigeria.
Paul disclosed that although he loved playing football, he gave up on the sport as he sensed that age was catching up with him.
Nonetheless, when Nigeria emerged victorious in the 1996 Atlanta Olympics football tournament, the Okoye brothers were inspired by the rewards bestowed on the winning team by the then-president. They reverted to football.
“But then Nigeria won this football, Atlanta Olympic 96′ I think. And when they won the competition, we saw what the then-president gave the footballers; we dropped our mics and went back to soccer,” Paul said.
Peter added that giving up on football came after he realised that pursuing music would take him international.
“Remember, at the same time we were having this situation whereby I was playing for Pepsi Academy. So, if we were trying to wear boots, and I’m like, ‘I’m gonna remain local. Entertainment is about to take me international,” he said.
The duo eventually found greater success in the music industry. They would later fall out over a family dispute, finally splitting in 2017. After the split, they both went on to start solo careers as Mr. P (Peter) and Rudeboy (Paul).
At their 40th birthday in 2021, they stated that they had reconciled and are set to release their first studio album in years in 2023.