Tuesday, May 8, 2007

African All-Star Game

File this under the 'Neat Ideas' category.

English football club Portsmouth said today they'll host a charity football match being organized by Nigeria's Nwankwo Kanu, their star striker. Kanu (left, in the picture) is the most highly-decorated African footballer in history, with over 10 awards to his name, including a UEFA Champions League, a UEFA Cup and two African Player of the Year awards. He is also the only current Premiership player to have won the UEFA Champions League, UEFA Cup, Premiership and FA Cup.

Kanu's game will take place at the club's home ground of Fratton Park and is shaping up as a match of African all-stars. How cool is this?

Arsenal's Kolo Toure (Ivory Coast) and Emmanuel Adebayor (Togo) will join Chelsea's Ghananian midfielder Michael Essien and Super Eagle Jon Obi Mikel on the pitch to raise funds for The Nwankwo Kanu Heart Foundation, on May 20th.

Other English-based Nigerians who could line-up in a 'Friends of Kanu' side include Newcastle United striker Obafemi Martins, former Bolton Wanderers midfielder Jay-Jay Okocha (best African player ever?) and Middlesbrough striker Yakubu.

Senegal's Amady Faye (Charlton) and Diomansy Kamara (West Brom) are also expected to take part.

Kanu started this foundation in 1996 after a routine medical revealed cardiac problems, requiring life-saving heart surgery.

The Nigerian marksman set up the charity to provide funds for sick children with similar ailments in his native Africa.

In this day & age of the flashy superstar and all-for-me selfishness that pervades football, it's nice to hear of Kanu's efforts.

If you're around, go out and support the game. Here's a link to Kanu's charity website. Well worth the effort for this wonderful cause.


Chxta said...

Kanu is great. And your assessment of his magnanimity in this age of selfish super stars is spot on.

Anonymous said...

Jay Jay Okocha will be at The Free Kick Masters 2007 in Houston, Texas USA on December 22, 2007.
We are considering giving away signed tee shirts, jerseys, balls, etc. and having some contests online. Any suggestions?