A producer as well as playmaker, Nyge is a creative talent who plys his trade on both sides of the pitch. As an established player, the opportunity to turn professional was looking a very possible outcome. However, having worked with the likes of Headie One, AJ Tracey, Skepta, Not3s and many more, he has become a hit maker and sought after talent for many. Getting an insight into his world, we talk Arsenal, inspiration and the ambition as he looks forward to a bright future.

Can you describe what grass roots football looked like for you?

Grass roots football for me is similar to Sunday League. The quality is what it is but you do get the occasional shooting star that comes from it. I think the passion in it is so much more than Saturday football. It's a raw passion. I like it a lot. You see a lot of wild challenges flying in.

Your dad had a big influence on you finding football. Can you describe your relationship with the game now?

With the game now, it’s been a ride. I fell out of love with football a few years ago because, being honest, a lot came down to Arsenal’s form and the general feeling around the club made me lose interest. At the same time, I was caught in the middle, wondering whether I should carry on playing, trying to make it pro or should I aim to get a career outside of football. Before that time I was obsessed with football but now, lately it’s caught me all over again and I’ve been loving it.

What about your dad’s influence on you with football, can you tell us about that?

My dad took me to the common when I was younger and introduced me to various teams for me to play with. He got me into football. He would take me to games when he could. He got me into Arsenal and bought me all the kits. It’s been instilled in me from an early age. He showed me how to do kick up and everything you can think of connected to football.

What did he tell you or show you about the game early on that really caught your attention?

One thing he used to tell me all the time was “never play in goal”. He didn’t want me to be a keeper. He wanted me to shine outfield.

What players blew your mind as a kid and why? What was it about them?

As a child, I used to like Crespo. He was sick. I’m a striker so I always associated myself with him. I remember a goal he scored against Liverpool in the Champions League final, it was insane. Even though they didn’t win, that still had a big impact on me. He was underrated but was a proper, proper player. It was kind of weird, players like him and Schevchenko were incredible but didn’t have the same impact in England.

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Who is it that does that for you now? Who is breaking waves in that respect for you?

Right now, my favourite player is Grealish. I like him a lot, I like the way he plays. The way he always wants the ball is visible. He’s a strong captain and his leadership shows. Between him and Foden for me, they’re two good players who I have time for on the pitch.

When we look back at where it started for you, football is a universal language and can create such a strong community. How much do you like that about the game?

I love it. I’m not one of those people who is out there making new friends and meeting new people all the time. Football is simple, as soon as you’ve passed the ball to someone, you’ve made a friend. It’s a great thing socially. It’s as simple as that, you don’t even need to speak the same language as someone, football really does break down barriers.

Did it help you express yourself from an early age?

Yeah it did. I’m always shouting on the pitch whereas when I’m off it I’m more quiet and reserved. You’ve got to be heard on the pitch and that’s the way it is for me. It lets me be a different side of who I am.

Music and football go hand in hand - what’s your take on how they cross over?

Music and football are tied together so much. The lifestyles are identical. A lot of musicians want to be footballers and a lot of footballers want to be musicians. I’ve known and seen that over a number of years. Both artists and players often end up in the same places and do the same things. The lives they lead are very similar but also very different but there’s mutual respect between both industries. When you look at the fans too, on the music side and the football side, they’re both equally as passionate about both fields. They’ll let you know when you’ve done something wrong but also celebrate hugely. Also, look at FIFA - without music, FIFA is pointless. Sometimes I’ll just sit with the menu on just to hear the playlist. 

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For you, at what point did music come into your life? Was it a similar passion as your love for football?

Music came into my life a bit later than football. Everyone loves music and I never thought I could have a career in it. As a kid I could definitely imagine myself getting into football more than I could in music but I love them both the same for me. I used to listen to stuff like 50 Cent when I was younger. I would get my mum to buy me albums. I remember they had parental guidance stickers on them. I remember getting a Dizzee Rascal one as well. As I got older I would be listening to anything. From Taylor Swift to Future.

When you look at footballers careers and yours as a musician. Is there anyone you would compare your rise with?

Tough question. I would say I am like Lewandowski. In the sense that he is consistent every year. He’s under the radar but one of the best.

How does it feel to start getting your voice heard? Do you see your profile as a chance to put out a message with your music?

I do see the opportunity to put out music as a chance to put out a message, yeah. It’s one of the things that makes music such a powerful tool. I think on the profile side of things, it’s about building your own brand. The bigger you make that brand, the bigger the reach and ultimately the more people you can share your message with so it goes hand in hand. I’d say I like teaching. I’m trying to expand all the time so that I can teach in the future and help share positive messages.

How high do you set the bar? What are your real ambitions?

The sky's the limit. I’m never really satisfied. I could get a number one tomorrow but I’d still be asking “where’s the next one”. It’s a blessing and a curse to think that way but I’m always striving for more. I’m hugely ambitious and that won’t stop or slow down.

Describe your thoughts on Arsenal right now? What makes the club unique to you?

Uniqueness is the tradition. Arsenal are never out of the question. For ten years in a row the form has been poor but there’s STILL a possibility that something might happen in that season. At the start of every season, I can’t help that feeling that’s like “we’re going to do it this year”. That hope is always there. It’s not always been easy as an Arsenal fan. When I was younger I was full of the chat and would dish that out to my friends because Arsenal were so good. Over the years I’ve been hiding my head [laughs] but every year I’m still saying to myself, let’s see...we’ll see…

They’ve dropped wild kits this year. What’s the future of the club look like for you?

I think the future is bright. I can’t get it seeing it getting worse than it has been. I’m starting to see progression now for the first time in a while. Hopefully Tottenham don’t progress as fast as we can. Arsenal is a team that always looks good on the pitch, I’ll say that much.

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