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Darlington Nagbe

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I was talking with a former Zips player, and he mentioned some details of Darlington's story (more specific details of escaping Liberia with his Mom and siblings and coming to Ohio) that I didn't recall reading or hearing. I found the additional details that were mentioned to be very interesting and thought I'd share anything that I find with the rest of ZipsNation in this thread. Please feel free to let me know if some of what I post in this thread has already been posted previously.


Weah and Nagbe's Liberian roots unite with the USMNT March 26, 2018


...The reason? Weah and Nagbe’s deep family connection. The roots of which began on another continent with another national soccer team, over thirty years ago. 


To find the beginning of the Weah-Nagbe soccer connection, one must travel to the west African nation of Liberia, where Weah and Nagbe’s fathers starred together for the Liberian national team for the better part of two decades. George Weah, now the president of Liberia, was a world-class striker who won the 1995 Ballon d’Or while playing for Italian power AC Milan. Joe Nagbe was a commanding defender who had a lengthy career in Europe and earned 97 caps for Liberia. ...



Versatile Standout Finds a Position, and a Home with Portland Timbers Nov 28, 2015


...The pathway to American citizenship was not easy for Nagbe. Born in Liberia during its long civil war, he stayed behind with his mother while his father, Joe, a mainstay with Liberia’s national team alongside the former world player of the year George Weah, played professionally in Europe.


“It was a really difficult time, especially for my mom,” Nagbe said. “I hear a lot of stories about the time my dad left to go to France to play. My mom hadn’t followed him yet, and then the war broke out. At nights, she was hearing gunshots, and there was no electricity. My older brother was 3, and she was pregnant with me. She had to find someone to deliver me and was getting help from rebels. They managed a way to stay together, stay alive, and flee the country.”


Once they left Liberia, the Nagbes bounced around from France to Greece to Switzerland to — in the one move not involving Joe’s playing career — Cleveland. Early in his Akron coaching tenure, Porter got a phone call from the former United States national team player George Nanchoff, Nagbe’s youth coach at the time, imploring Porter to scout Nagbe. When he did, Porter recalled, he described Nagbe’s performance as “jaw-dropping.” ...


Edited by Zip_ME87

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March 27, 2013



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