Ever wondered why Super Eagles and Leicester City forward Kelechi Iheanacho has two dots under his name on the back of his jersey.
The 21-year-old requested for the new inscription feature on his jersey after his move to the King Power Stadium. But the big question is: why did he make such request? He decided to have the details of the two dots to enhance proper pronunciation of the vowels – the ‘Ị’ & ‘Ọ’ – in his name.
The dialect has vowels including underdots, which change the articulation and pronunciation of the letter, having a tonal language with two distinctive tones, high and low. In some cases, a third, down stepped high tone is recognized.
For Iheanacho’s case, the ‘I’ and ‘o’ inside his surname include these. Thus, the right spelling of the striker’s name is Ịheanachọ. examples are Ẹ, Ị, Ọ, Ụ, Ṅ, Ṣ, Ɓ, Ɗ, and Ƙ
Iheanacho is a member of the Igbo speaking tribe which makes up an extensive level of the populace in the West African country. The Foxes striker hometown is in the state of Imo, where the population is 98 percent Igbo.
Igbo is the principal native language of the Igbo people, an ethnic group of Southeastern Nigeria. The language has approximately 24 million speakers, who live mostly in Nigeria and are primarily of Igbo descent.
The former Manchester City forward, whose name actually interprets as ‘what we are looking for’, has these ‘Dots’ on his Leicester City jersey. Curiously, before joining The Foxes, Iheanacho’s Manchester City kits didn’t include the ‘Dots’.
Some eminent Igbo players have graced the Premier League which includes the like of Nwankwo Kanu, Nedum Onuoha, Angelo Ogbonna, Jay-Jay Okocha, John Obi Mikel, Alex Iwobi, Wilfred Ndidi and others.