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Exclusive: ‘Big Usain Bolt fan’ Ogbene on becoming one of the quickest in the league

Exclusive: ‘Big Usain Bolt fan’ Ogbene on becoming one of the quickest in the league

Luton Town forward Chiedozie Ogbene has told TNT Sports that Olympic sprinting legend Usain Bolt inspired him to be one of the quickest players in the Premier League.

His pace is a constant threat for opposing defenders and he has been one of the key players for Luton during their debut campaign in the league.

Ogbene has contributed with four goals and two assists across 30 matches in all competitions this term and credits his speed to watching Bolt winning his gold medals in the previous Olympic Games.

Speaking exclusively to TNT Sports’ Sign-Up show, the Republic of Ireland international reveals that he was also inspired by his siblings to use his speed as an advantage in his career.

“I’m currently third [fastest] at the moment,” Ogbene said. “When I was younger, I was quite slim. So I spent a lot of time in the gym to build more muscle mass. As a kid also, I watched a lot of sprinting videos, a big Usain Bolt fan.

“I have two brothers who also perform track and field. In the summer, I spent a lot of time with them learning how to run because to sprint, to run, it is a skill that you have to learn.

“I know naturally, we’re all able to run but as a kid I always try to be more efficient in how. So watching a lot of sprinting videos, I’ve watched the Olympic finals multiple times, just watching Usain Bolt. If I can perfect how I can run and obviously added with my football skills it does give me that extra 1%.

“I’m hoping to [top third fastest player], maybe not now, maybe in the summer when the weather’s nice and my muscles a bit warmer.”

Despite playing Premier League football for the first time in the club’s history, Luton have been one of the most competitive teams this season and impressive neutrals with their refusal to be walked over by the bigger names.

They claimed a 1-1 draw against Liverpool, secured a 1-0 win over Newcastle United before producing some exciting football in the reverse fixture at St. James’ Park which ended 4-4.

Although they suffered home defeats to Manchester City, Chelsea, Arsenal, Tottenham and Manchester United, all of those games were only decided by a single goal.

The Hatters currently sit in the relegation zone in 18th place and four points from safety, but Ogbene says there is a great spirit among the players and they are determined to prove their doubters wrong.

“It’s unique,” he added. “That’s one thing I will say, it is unique. We all come from different backgrounds. But we all have the same vision, the way the manager brought the players in, he brought hard-working players who have grafted to get to the top.

“We’ve been written off many times, and we’ve still come out and proved teams wrong, proved people wrong and that’s the kind of culture we have. We believe in ourselves.

“And I always said before that opinions can’t play the game for us. So that’s what we believe here so we play for ourselves and we fight for each other.”

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