Coming up, Isaac Promise showed lots of prospect to emerge as one of Nigeria’s biggest footballers, so much so that he attracted the attention of Manchester United unarguably greatest Manager, Sir Alex Ferguson. Though he failed to meet the requirements of Old Trafford eggheads, he still paid his dues in his chosen career-the round leather game
Nigerians received with rude shock on Thursday the news of the death of former U23 Captain, Promise Isaac who died after collapsing during a workout in his apartment complex gym at the age of 31.
Isaac was playing for the Austin Bold of the USL and the team said he died Wednesday night. Police said authorities were called after a report of a deceased person at Isaac’s apartment building but further details were not available. Austin Bold owner Bobby Epstein said Isaac collapsed at the apartment gym and no foul play was suspected.
In its reaction, the Nigeria Football Federation, NFF described as ‘shocking’, reports on the evening of Thursday that former Nigeria U20 and U23 captain Isaac Promise had died.
NFF General Secretary, Dr. Mohammed Sanusi, said the Federation and indeed the entire Nigerian Football were greatly saddened by the report, coming less than 48 hours after two women footballers of Nigeria Women Professional League side, Police Female Machine FC of Uyo were crushed to death by a hit-and-run Jeep driver after a training session in the Akwa Ibom State capital.
“This has been a tragic week for Nigerian Football. Isaac Promise was a very disciplined, energetic, committed and patriotic player who gave him all every time he put on the green-and-white. Our prayer is that Almighty God will grant his soul eternal rest and also grant those he has left behind the fortitude to bear the big loss.”
Isaac played for Nigeria at the 2005 World Youth Championship and captained the Under-23 national team that lost the 2008 Olympic final in Beijing 1-0 to Lionel Messi and Argentina. He also appeared in three matches for Nigeria’s senior national team.
Isaac played for seven clubs in Turkey, appearing in more than 350 matches. He spent a season in Saudi Arabia before signing with Austin Bold, where he had three goals in 20 matches this season.
In a tribute to Isaac, Epstein said, “The greatest loss a team can suffer is not on the scoreboard, it’s the death of a fellow teammate.”
“It’s with shock and grief that we acknowledge the sudden death of Promise Isaac. On behalf of the Bold organization, we wish his wife, children and family strength and peace as they struggle to cope with his death.”
Meanwhile Austin Bold FC, has rescheduled their weekend match in honour of the late striker.
The Club on their twitter handle wrote; .@USL_HQ announced that Austin Bold FC’s contest at @RealMonarchs, originally scheduled for Saturday, 10/5 at 2:00 p.m. CST, has been postponed to a Wednesday, 10/16 following the tragic news of Bold forward Promise Isaac’s passing on Wednesday night.