Video: Norwich City and Newcastle United stars Leroy Fer and Vurnon Anita talk about their friendship and love of rap music
- Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd
Caribbean heritage, rap music and football rivalry will make for an eagerly anticipated trip to Newcastle for Norwich City midfielder Leroy Fer later this week.
The Canaries star will be meeting up with childhood friend and fellow Holland international Vurnon Anita, who plays for Newcastle United.
The more eagle-eyed fans of the two clubs may have spotted the pair have a musical connection.
They both have a love for rap music and were featured in a short online film about their friendship when they were both playing in Holland, Fer for Feyenoord and Anita for rivals Ajax.
They were interviewed ahead of a derby clash between the top-flight rivals, as both players were beginning to establish themselves as two of their country's top young midfielders.
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Now both have brought their talents to the Premier League and are showing signs of fulfilling their potential, with Fer scoring the final goal in Norwich's much-needed 3-1 win against West Ham recently.
Fer and Anita have seen their careers run almost in parallel. They both played at youth levels for their country and have started to force their way in to the senior Holland squad in recent months.
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Fer's family are originally from the island of Curaçao, in the south Caribbean sea, although the 23-year-old was born in Holland. While Anita was born on the island, which was part of the Dutch Antilles before it was disbanded, and his family moved to Europe when he was eight years old.
The online film, available on YouTube, features a rap battle between Fer and Anita before a match between Ajax and Feyenoord when they were both 20 years old.
Asked where their friendship stemmed from Anita says: 'I believe from the youth, because it's since the C's [12 to 14 years team] that we've played against each another. And we both know from one another that we come from Curaçao, so it clicked immediately.
'If we play against each other then we are just enemies, then I momentarily just don't know him. But if we are outside of the pitch, or with Young Orange [Holland youth teams] when we play together, then we are just good friends and have to make the best of it.'
Fer adds: 'If I go out, I go out with Vurnon, that kind of stuff. And yeah, It's also because of the past, let's say.'
Fer goes on to say that he listens to a lot of rap and R&B music, such as Lil Wayne, Dr Dre and Jay-Z, and says he and Anita often send each other new songs they have heard.
The pair even have rapper names and have featured on a track recorded by former Liverpool winger Ryan Babbel, or Rio as he is known in the music world.
Fer uses the name Lerra Fer and Anita goes by JR, with the latter saying that music is 'very important' for them both, saying: 'It is a relaxant outside of football and going to games, for instance, I always listen to music.'
- Thanks to Jurian Steeghs for his help translating the video, which can be watched above.