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Arsenal-slayer Mwepu immortalised by Zambian poet

9:29 PM IST 15/04/22
Enock Mwepu
A local scribe has paid tribute to the Chipolopolo star following his winner against the Gunners

by Joel Omotto

Zambian poet Zombe Mwanangwa has delighted football fans in Africa and beyond after reciting a poem in praise of Brighton and Hove Albion midfielder Enock Mwepu.

The Zambia international scored his team’s second goal as the Seagulls beat Arsenal 2-1 at the Emirates Stadium last weekend.

It was a delightful strike which prompted a creative outpouring from local poet Mwanangwa, who drew subtle parallels between Mwepu and late Zambia great Alex ‘Computer’ Chola.

“I don’t know if you know that, unlike Samson, Enock Mwepu willingly cut his hair before returning for battle,” Zombe began.

“The Emirates, like the walls of Jericho, came tumbling down to the sound of the Brighton fans, for once again it was a Zambian midfield genius, the recently updated computer, who for the love of peace quarantined the Gunners to possibly throw their top four hopes out of the window.

He proceeded: “The assist…haaa…I see you know what I’m about to say just like you would debate what he saw, but thank God, Leandro [Trossard] did.”

Mwepu gave Brighton a 2-0 lead in the 66th minute after Trossard had opened the scoring just before the half-hour mark.

Martin Odegaard pulled one back for the Gunners with an effort from range one minute from time, but Arsenal were unable to bag an equaliser.

“The goal…hoho..the goal…you don’t teach that,” Mwanangwa continued. “The movement, the technique, the execution, you’re born with it, it’s an in-built software.

“You either have it or you don’t, and Mwepu definitely does.

“The Zambian, oozing with class and Arsenal, perfectly dismissed,” he concluded. “A Brighton win, it’s been a while, Mwepu man of the match and now, we want more.”

The poet’s flourish of inspiration drew fond responses and warm praise from Chipolopolo and Seagulls fans alike.

“Fantastic,” Brighton’s official handle replied to the poem on Twitter, with the poet responding: “Glad you like it. I'm working on one for the club, I know you'll love.”

A number of fans were also left in awe by Mwanangwa’s prowess: “Simply wonderful! Does everyone in Zambia naturally exude joy? It’s very infectious,” posed @blakeydp.

“You should be invited to present the awards at the end of season party. Wonderful wordsmanship,” said @simonthebrikky after which Mwanangwa said, “This would be a dream.”

@Rileyroo1306v3 is not so sure whom to love between the player and the poet after this: “Not sure who I love more, Enock or you.”

“Wonderful, nearly as good as his performance,” was @tmws547’s response.

@littleboris wants Mwepu to keep scoring so that the poems keep coming: “Could listen to you all day! Need more goals and assists for this joy,” she said.

Mwepu, who returned from a three-month injury layoff, also created Brighton’s opening goal which was scored by Trossard as Graham Potter’s side ended a seven-match winless run.

The Zambian, who is in his maiden Premier League season, said he is eyeing a strong end to the campaign after a hamstring injury in January saw him miss out on the action until April 2 when he returned as a substitute against Norwich.

"I am a positive guy and I always see setbacks as something to learn from and try to improve. I am trying my best working on my body and my strength. It hasn't been easy but I am trying to stay on my feet and finish the season strongly," Mwepu, 24, told BBC Radio Sussex this week.

Brighton visit high-flying Tottenham in the Premier League on Saturday, and many in Zambia and across Africa will be hoping that Mwepu is on target again so that Mwanangwa recites another poem.