The rising profile of 19-year-old striker, Nansel Selbol, continues to attract interest from coaches, particularly those in Europe and South America. The Jos-born player, who made the provisional list for the Nigerian U-17 team in 2013, currently plies his trade with Swope Park Rangers in the United States of America.
Selbol signed with the Swope Park Rangers in January last year after an impressive outing with Sporting Kansas City’s Academy. Before he jetted out to USA, Nansel had featured for some Nigerian clubs, including City Of David FC of Lagos, Plateau United FC of Jos and Pawas Soccer Academy.
Swope Park Rangers is the development team of Sporting Kansas City FC. In 2015, a football agent who came to Nigeria to scout for players spotted Nansel and two other players. During the trial, he was the only one to stick in Kansas City. He soon became one of the most-sought-after players just seven days after his debut with the SKC Academy in September 2015, when he scored a hat trick against the Colorado Rapids.
With confidence growing stronger in the game, Nansel netted 12 goals in 14 appearances, thus making him a talking point in the USL. Now he wants to actualise his dream of playing football at the highest level.
“My father always tells me to work hard,” Nansel said. “He says I have to be like a man because if I don’t work hard today then it will affect me tomorrow. My mother always prays for me also. I have assured my mother that I will do all I can to play football at the highest level. That is the way I can capture my dream. They believe I will go places. They give me the support I need. They know I have something in me. They know I will get somewhere, someday,” he said.
Nansel was in Lagos recently, where he visited the Remand Boys home to donate football kits and food items to the boys. He said it was his little way of giving back to his community.
He also spoke on his target with Swope Park Rangers in the USL. “I have to give my best because my goal for this season is to help my club achieve success. I just want to be humble and work hard. It’s a new team and I like to win all the time. I hate to lose. I want to have a successful season because it’s my first professional season here. I just want myself and the team to be successful and work hard together, and I believe if we do so, we will achieve what we want.”
At the moment, Nansel and his teammates are on pre-season awaiting the start with Swope Park Rangers in the USL season beginning March 26. The Rangers finished the Desert Diamond Cup undefeated. His coach, Dos Santos has recently described Nansel as “a very good player who is always ready to learn.”