Their trip to Poland in the early 1990s must have been an exotic experience. The first to make his way over was Noel Sikhosana, who joined Wisla Krakow. On the 30th of March 1991, he played for the first time (and his last) in a match against Zaglebie Sosnowiec. It was his presence on the football field that gave rise to so much emotion. These were motions that were more intense than the already high level of emotions involved in ultra fandom. He and others like him had to suffer the hard lesson of Polish racism, starting from bunches of bananas tossed onto the field and the dubious overtones of newspaper articles and interviews. For many of these players, their stints in Poland were a passing phase, not quite a permanent destination for making their football fantasies come true, and they didn't stay for long.
Collage inspired by Abdou Razack Traoré, born in Ivory Coast.