Yaya Sanogo almost quit football due to injury; for a career with the Postal Service.
The potential alternative careers of professional footballers is always a topic that amuses me.
Whether it is Mario Balotelli saying he would be a UFC fighter, Hugo Lloris and Yoann Gourcuff giving up potential professional tennis careers, or Peter Crouch’s admission that without kicking a football up and down some grass for a living he would be a virgin (although I am not sure that counts as a career) footballers always had potential other avenues.
But with most of them those avenues or aspirations usually involved other sporting professions such as tennis, rugby, cricket or whatever; it is rare that one would want to work in the postal service.
However new Arsenal striker Yaya Sanogo is one such man.
The French youngster may now state he dreams to be a player similar to former Gunner Emmanuel Adebayor but there was once a point in his life when being the next Postman Pat was his only ambition.
The 20-year-old suffered a horrific leg-break in 2010 whilst featuring for Auxerre’s reserves against Mulhouse and during the painful rehabilitation period the thought of never playing football again certainly crossed his mind.
‘’I felt there was no point in me continuing and putting my health at risk. I couldn’t run any more, the doctors didn’t know what my problem was and I felt disgusted. I told my mother that I was going to work for the Post Office. But one day I tried to run once more, it went well, and I recovered bit by bit.”
However thankfully for Arsenal he recovered; as judging by his recent goalscoring antics it appears they may have unearthed yet another gem from the French market.
And it is once again all thanks to the rarely heralded chief French scout and former player Gilles Grimandi and the personal approach of Arsene Wenger; who talked Sanogo around on the subject of a North London move:
“Gilles came to watch me at Auxerre and he invited me to a hotel in Paris. Arsene Wenger was there to welcome me in person. I was very impressed that he had come all that way specially. He told me I would get my chance at Arsenal. He said he’d been following me for years. The journey he’d made convinced me to join Arsenal.”
Now Arsenal fans hope the only thing he will be delivering is goals next season.