Interview with Freddie Kanoute
Channel: Abu Eesa Niamatullah
File Size: 26.28MB
Imam Abu Eesa Niamatullah, Director of 1st Ethical interviews professional footballer Freddie Oumar Kanout on his reversion to Islam, his charity projects, his football career and his favourite memories.
if you can speak you can
speak a word of French.
does that analysis.
Obviously, we've known you for a long time, but there are some people few people out there who unfortunately are not interested in football enough to know actually who you are. You're a great asset to our to actually all of Europe and then Muslims specifically, but can you tell us a little bit about yourself?
French and African footballer started my career in new, my hometown.
After a couple of years as a professional I went to London played three years for Western two years for Tottenham. And it's been six years until I play for four severe and you're still going. Yeah, I still have a little bit to go not too long, but I don't think a lot of fans think you have a little bit too
much outline. I told them
weeks ago. Yeah. If I can rest properly between the games. That's okay. I still have some you know,
if I can complete the exam, Ryan, good to see you can go in it and I think I cannot compete with him.
Listen, now, tell us, um, obviously, there are a lot of people out there. Who are you a convert some coal nuclear revert, and the Muslims are very interested in your life story, not just because you're a footballer and everything that comes with that, but because you were an are a brilliant footballer, Mashallah you play with gone, which is very important for the Muslims to look up to in a time where I guess we don't have a super high quality role models. Tell us a little bit about the Islam decided side of your story. Yeah, I may prefer seeing myself as a revert that that's, that's a nice word. Sure. But, you know, in terms of technicality, maybe I would say, I'm a convert, although
my father is from a Muslim background and Christian background, because there is more or less 5% or 3%, of the population of Mali, and he was born, he was born in Mali, but there is a small
percentage of the population
who are Christian denied. And he was from a mixed, okay.
family and my amounts. With French my mom was French, she's French, French. Yeah, she's French, French. And with a Christian background, say that we've been raised freely in terms of religion, right and decided to, to,
to convert to Islam, I would say, when I was around 20. And I did it officially, let's say, taking the Shahada when I was
23, more or less 2223 publicly in London, in London, I was in London, which is also an interesting side of story to us, especially in Britain into that kind of Western English speaking audience, because we have this idea that in France, their model of lecithin, that kind of secularism that they that they promote, so much, makes it very difficult for Islam to flourish. We think I guess that the multicultural kind of model in England is more easier and more favorable model, your experience from living in France and then coming to England, what would you say? Yeah, I would say that multi cultural
In, in England is much easier. When I, when I arrived in in in London, I was surprised and amazed by the difference of people walking down the street and you know, and everybody accept that. And to be fair, nobody cares. Yeah, that's how it should be. Nobody cares the way you dress the way you You are the way you know. And that's the way it should be, to my point of view,
after from the French point of view, they see that as community communitarianism. Okay, you know, so they criticize a little bit because they said that they organize themselves in in, in London, for example, as a small community, and they, in their everyday life, they don't mix too much with some other cultures. So everybody recreate their own background country into into Britain, for example, yes, and they criticize that a little bit is saying that in France, now, we want to live together once, but sometimes they push you, and they want to force you being the way they want. Yeah, so so it's a bit, you know, as, as I said many times that there are bright side, but sides in both in both
sides, you know, I think but to be fair, when I arrived in London, you know, I felt it like fresh air for me. And he, it felt very good to be in that kind of country when you can express and practice your religion freely without, without trying to justify yourself about anything. So it was one of the things that I myself, I'm involved in is promoting the concept of civic engagement, as I have to call it, that's what it's all about now trying to re engage with the society, to normalize the other person, we're still seen as the other whether it's because of a different skin color, or because of a different religion, our practice is still the other and it's just that ability to be
able to normalize. What I'd like to ask you is that what do you think the reason is between the difference? Or the ease that Muslim might find a practicing Muslim might find in England and France? Is it because they are more engaged in the UK and less so politically? For example, people standing for parliament, or people getting involved in business and so on in France? How would you What would you save up? First, this is great. I think, you know, Muslim being involved. Muslim?
I would say any, any, I don't even like the term minority. Because in terms of citizenship, I think there is no
equal. So So I would say maybe in terms of religion, if there are some minority, I think it's really, really positive that they engage they involve into into life, whether it is politic, whether it is anything else. Yes, both. And this is really, really positive for any society.
diversity in that kind of aspect. And I think it's more it's, it's, it's more developed into, into Britain into into England than France. Of course, there is no doubt about that. I think immigration is is more
recent, in France also, and there is only a couple of generation of immigrants in, in France a little bit more sometimes. And in in, in England, I think the colonization was different, the goal of the colonization was more purely economic, economical, you know, and
in France, they, they I think they tried also to to impose their way of thinking their way of life their way or their religion, they you know, but I think the, I would say that the goal of the colonization was a bit different. I may be mistaken, but I think there are lots of little aspects like this that may facilitate the integration of Muslim or any other religion in in Britain, compared to France. What do you What about Spain? You've been there now, six years now? Yes, yes. Six years? It's a long time. So yes.
I would say that in Spain, there are quite late in terms of
on Muslim or any other minority in terms of religion, I would say, because it's more recent. And I think until now, when they see some, some some Muslim they, they just look at them as immigrants as a foreigner, as you know, they don't, so they don't get involved too much into into social life.
I guess your role then as not only Muslim but black African, as such in Spain, I think is a very important very highly pressurized rock, right? Yeah, yeah. But I
wouldn't say that in Spain, there are more races than any other country.
In England, we get that idea, just from a football point of view.
It always seems to be blaming the Spanish Yeah, yeah, I think they're more advanced in, in that aspect in in England. And that's great. That's great.
In Spain, they have lots of work to do, but it's about their misconception, and their misunderstanding and ignorance about
maybe other cultures. That's it, because it is much less
mixed society. So they don't know the other, as you said before, as much as English and, and French.
On the other end of the abuse now.
So that's why it's still still a long trip to go for, for the for the Spanish for the for this aspect. But
nevertheless, I think for since the day I arrived in, in Spain,
I think I could do very, very good job in terms of charity, in terms of, of expressing my own point of view about religion about you know, and a lot of people are really interesting, genuinely interested in what I'm saying in wanting to share, to share some some, some things from point of view with me. Yeah, and I think it's, it's, it's, so it's a good proof for me that we shouldn't get any
How to say
sorry, I forgot the prejudice, about anyone saying that the Spanish are more racist than it is now. It's just about trying to get involved trying to
do that. Yeah. And trying to to, to to share some some things with other countries other religion and, and we missed that so bad, you know, in the in, in Europe in general. And I think when we start blaming, blaming each other and try to discuss more, I think we will solve lots of lots of problems and issues. So on this issue itself, right, a lot of the International Muslim audience, they look at you
they've seen, I think, this reception, this positive reception to this role model I'm talking about now the non Muslims, right, that they have warmed to they've taken you as a favor. Do you feel
this pressure because we know that Mashallah, you're a practicing Muslim, which is a you know, there are lots of Muslims playing football. We just, I guess, we don't see the religion or the religious side very much. Do you feel that extra pressure when you're playing because you know, your role and you're very intelligent and Mashallah, you know, what the effect is, you know, your responsibility as well in front of a lot. Do you feel that extra pressure to do a bit more, especially when you know, that every single thing that you do is analyzed, it's like, every time you score the phone, you've now patented? The, you know, for a loss
of the hands and the two fingers?
Do you feel that pressure especially when the cameras are focusing every time someone comes onto the pitch as a substitute, David, you know, they did a cross and everyone is, you know, what do you think what would you say about that?
I would say, don't feel so much pressure because I'm only being natural. And when you try being something someone else, I think you can feel the pressure because you can say, Oh gosh, maybe I'm gonna I'm gonna do something different or something bad one moment and I'm going to show my true face to people yes. But when you natural and when you do think because you think they're right and i don't care really if someone blame me because when they saw I'm disappointed because it didn't it didn't react as a Muslim Yes, because I get cross I sometimes I really wanted I'm really angry. I'm reading so sometimes people are is not so good, man. Well, you know, I saw him he was crazy. The
other day was you know,
no human being, human being and you know, I don't try to appear different as I am. In private, you know,
to people, so I'm just being myself. And but the risk of stability, I like this with more than pressure, I have a responsibility like anyone. And I know now that because what I've done in terms of the little I've done in terms of charity in terms of, of being, like the equal role model for Muslims, you know, I know I have a responsibility, but as you said, in the in the in the question itself, it's more the responsibility towards God towards God. And not.
I wouldn't say not that much, but first toward God and after, towards the people to tears, I think people must feel that
responsibility in their, at their scale, I think everybody has gone through something. And and I think I've got a responsibility, I can assume that I can, I can take on that. And, and that there is no pronoun about that thing, if it helps people. That's good. It's interesting, you talk about natural reactions, natural tendencies, because I guess injustice is something that people generally Muslim, non Muslims, they feel strongly about. And for example, the invasion
was something that the world was just it couldn't accept, and something as you as a human being, and as a Muslim, you didn't want to accept either. And we have that incident where you supported for the State of Palestine.
What do you think about the reaction to that the Spanish Federation Football Federation Oh, and how they reacted to that, and the happiness they bought to the Palestinians festival? They're Muslims, generally, to people who are looking for justice for justice, even more generally. What would you say about that? Do you feel the need to do things like that more? Do you think you could do more like that?
We can always do more.
I felt I had to do it. And I felt like, I felt that more people should have done it, honestly. Because, and what I didn't like is that they took that as Muslims solidarity, it's human beings. It is.
it we should see ourselves as a citizen of the world before anything, and and when there is injustice, whether it is against Palestinian or anyone else, we should denounce it, you know, we should
we should shout it loudly. And I think that's why I'm disappointed and not more people in terms of I'm not talking about footballers, I'm not talking, talking about, you know, a high. And I think it was really important. And then I would say that first reaction I had and really grateful because Spanish people first received that demonstration, I would say very positively. And they thanked me a lot of people, punish people who are
not Palestinian, also, I received a lot of emails from Palestinian and Arab Arabic background people. But I first owned the Spanish people show it was unbelievable. We have to remind people so that they demonstrated in a big number into the streets of Madrid, of Seville of a lot of big cities in Spain for the Palestinian cause. So
yeah, yeah, of course. And and I didn't speak about the Muslim solidarity in that aspect because first we have to see that this is injustice and that's it an injustice can be perpetrated against Muslim and against Christian and again, and we have to denounce it the same the same way. And that's it and of course, all the people sending me emails, from from the, from from from
Lebanon from missiles from all the other countries from Africa from United Way. It was great, but that's okay. And the Federation decided to give me a fine it was okay I don't even remember they didn't they I don't even remember about that it was like a small.
The I think what's interesting is that the way that you're talking about how you don't feel the need to always sell yourself and always put yourself as the spokesman voiceless, it's more unnatural role model position that you're happy to accept because of your general responsibility. I
you know, what's interesting is that Muslims look at sports people in a very high regard because Muslims that no one else they regard supposed to bless the pinnacle more than politicians more than world leaders, they are the role models for humanity, whether we like it or not. And you see that Muslim sports star celebrities, you see, some of them go overboard, and you see many they don't even you know, as if they hide their religion. So others, every time that the mic is put in front of them is always displayed on the right hand side, I want to praise God, I praise Almighty Allah and this and that, whatever.
But I find that you have this kind of balance, do you think? Do you have a pressure to change that balance? Do you think that you should say these things more?
I always tend to think that
first of all, your, your, your example, your your behavior is most important than anything else. I'm talking, I'm in contact with lots of non Muslims. And I have to talk to them to in new relation with the capacity of understanding. So let's try that I'm not going to use one kind of vocabulary when I talk to non Muslim and I'm going to use a different one to Muslim with not because I treat them differently, just because of level of understanding for them. And that seems really, but
I think as you said, the most important thing is finding the good balance. Yes. And, and I just try to be in, in peace with with myself with what I with what I do. And what I speakers, I come across a lot of Muslims in the areas that I work and allows the kingdom that I had, I find yourself as a very, very religious, very spiritual man.
And I was surprised actually by that game, to be honest with you. And I guess this is a lesson to many, many people that you don't know what's behind the pictures that you see and it's very difficult to judge the hearts of the people.
Your hair and body to open. You open the officially the children's village
Sakina this wonderful charity project now I have to say that your address yesterday
with all the dignitaries all the ambassadors and the presidents and everyone that was there with my dears respected. Your dress was something incredible. It was very emotional. It affected many, many people.
Wow, Valentin, so let's be honest, you
don't want to experience personal
issues. A corruption Association
don't even have any fee, pay until you get to serenity.
Musashi in Delano, Sudan at the CW
Swinton, a premium book is a concept it's a valid
I'd like you to perhaps share
the inspiration for that. And just tell us a little bit about the reasons behind this project.
It's been years you know, it's been years when I arrived in London, I started to think about that.
As I said early on, I have a very mixed background family and my father is from money. I've done some trip to money and
from very young age, I've always had like this connection with this country. I don't know why it's like this. And and I felt are so for the for the poverty here that is really high and I
I've always wanted to do something for for for money. And to be fair, when the first couple of years, as a footballer, I didn't think much about that, you know, you just arrive into a new job. You know, and, and after a couple of years, I started to think and some personal experience also, and from me also being converting into Islam into, you know, I really wanted to get involved into charity work. And I had to think how, and I tried, I started to think about a way of helping
vulnerable children, mainly, and I thought about education first. And we cannot talk about education if we don't tackle health problem here, if we don't tackle housing, because a lot of the young young people who are in the street and
begging for some money for some, you know, and, and, little by little I try, I tried to figure out a way of combining of putting everything together. And the idea of the children village came up, and we kept working on it. And for since I was in London, and and yesterday, I found the law, we could open it officially, although it's open since September last September. And Hamdulillah, I would say that my father too, has been like an inspiration. Because he's is an orphan, and has been raised if we can set it as an orphan because he lost his family to a very young age. And it was his dream also so so so I've tackled to issue in the same time mine and my father's so he was there yesterday. And
it meant a lot for all my family's it. And it was one of the most beautiful day of my life yesterday. So so that's why maybe yesterday we could feel that emotion into into my speech.
It's now up and running. But we want to support that now. And there's an audience out there that now aware of this project is a Canon project, and your foundation, the Community Foundation can
now tell us how we the Muslim public and audience can help you in the best way possible with this project? I've been there, I've seen it, I've inspired right, it's incredible work
a lot. So, tell us tell us from yourself. Well, I would say that the first log on on
Canada foundation.com to get
more information about about our project,
the main project is the second Nigerian village. So this is
these 10 This is a housing unit housing complex of 10 houses of children each house can
welcome 10 children. At the moment, we have 25 children and God willing, ChildLine one year, we will get the full capacity which is 100 children and we are about to to to to look for funds also in order to to build the school
to build the skill training center, because the goal of this children village is not only to give food and shelter is to give education to follow them until their they reach maturity. You know, and, and so, it's a very long process and we are
willing to to to
to stick with that you know and and so, this is this is very very important we have support from outside although the our aim Our objective is to be self sufficient because we have a program around also a farm complex in our farm and agriculture and you know so so we can grow our own food you can go this is a
whole complex of thing that will make us inshallah self sufficient. But of course for the for the building work for for for new infrastructure. I think we need some some some help from outside so I will encourage people to get closer to the project first by going to Clinton Foundation.
Come. And after we of course, we would access to get in touch with anyone that is willing to to help. Yeah. And I want to add for myself that that this isn't just a, like a Muslim project actually is for all the children. And because I guess the majority of Muslims will be watching this interview, I will say that the Muslims need to step up because the other citizens of Europe like UNICEF as a charity, and for example, your Spanish football colleagues, the champions of Africa, games that you've been playing and raising that money and having high profile, Ramos and r1, as involved in all of these games, they've done their part A lot of people are putting, you know,
supporting this project. So I guess that Muslims also need to help more and more, although they have, of course, but yeah, yeah, I would love to get even more Muslims
Association and foundations and charity to help us but of course, we don't focus on them because we are open to anyone and we got good partnership, as you said, with UNICEF and other
entity, and we are happy to collaborate with with almost anyone. And I think Yeah, the charity work
charity work goes above
religion and when you want to help and genuinely help a child in the street, you don't ask about his religion or you don't ask about his background, he just wants to add to to help without forcing him being Muslim is different is not taking him and said, Okay, now we have one more Muslim. It's not It's not the the idea of the of the second or not, because we are non religious organization, and we genuinely want to help and collaborate with with with anyone. And I encourage people to, to to help us. Also, you know, some some, of course, Muslim organization, and we've been working with some of them. And they're, they've been creative, so with us, and that's the way it should be, or should
remind the Muslims, the prophets of life and
myself and the one who looks after the orphan will be in paradise like these two fingers. So we have a guest an extra responsibility puts upon us about not by God to do that. So it's a wonderful project. Now, I guess we're running out of time. So what I want to finish off with are a number of questions that were submitted to us from Facebook and Twitter.
From the people so I guess but more in our next I guess.
How do you personally deal with Ramadan whilst playing kind of more high profile these days with this
episode with Josie Marino and so on? What How do you get around it? What do you do?
I do my best
lady who never said he loves her.
And that's what I've been practicing. Lucky I do I do my best and, and it's really hard especially in,
in, in Spain, south of Spain, Seville, I think is the hottest, hotter place one of the hottest place in the world. Right right. This is unbelievable in some way we can reach 45 degrees easily. So this is quite incredible. And and now Ramadan is in in August, and it's really hard in Seville, but I tried to maintain it. And
for me and for hosting this is really great and
strong and spiritual moments month. And we do we do almost anything to stick with that. And I try to do my best to to to to do all my fasting properly. Sometimes it's it gets difficult. And as I said, I do my best and sometimes if I have to, to
take it back later some days because I couldn't comply. Yes, it's so so so so
I think that number of African countries right, African football is more in Spain for the Spanish Liga clubs in the Premiership other than Arsenal just to take Arsenal out of the equation. Are there more Africans in African Muslims? I should say in Spain? I don't think there are lots of them. It's not a no no, I think we're in
France, definitely. Okay. But
also more in Britain, I think I think because the profile between Muslim players and manager kind of problems. I think there's been increasing a little bit yeah, I don't just want to say just to Ramadan, I think there's a tension that do you think is attention? How do you deal with for example, Salah, have prayer and so on. Do you think every time
Think it depends on each coach manager club it's okay it can be very different but what I would say first I would focus on the behavior This is really really important the behavior of the Muslim in any club and any industry anything in anything and this is the example is going to give and this is the message is going to convey to people through his behavior and you will notice that if the Muslim behave very nicely with people explain things not like for example Ramadan comes I don't care of you caffeine I'm gonna I'm gonna do my
this is not good yet so we have to convey also that message that you always have to be kind with people and they will respect you much easier sometimes it doesn't work yes but at least you you you've done your part and and it makes you It makes you It makes things much easier for you and and after if it doesn't work for for everybody but you do you do your best and it depends on as I said of each manager summit
mostly the older managers have had they've been very
comprehensive No, they've been really
they understood Okay, they're sympathetic about that issue of Ramadan you know, and and they've respected it sometimes they true it's true that when the game common when it's very hard You know, they they wish I could drink you know, so I can keep my my strength Yeah, you know, when I explained when I tried to be to do my best underground also they okay they say okay, I respect what you what you do, the nicest manager that you've bought
many I remember of
Harry Redknapp is nice manager is our favorite.
I remember him.
He just can't get goals. Now. I know I spent Thursday morning with him, Charlie. I've got to be honest. A lot of time with him on he's finishing and
in the transfer market what kind of players will you be looking for? I'd look
around anymore. I used to come watch.
anybody have a football fanatic?
Still controlling you kicked out of real
brains and you
go to Kenya
cup cup game that
we went up run off to Mexico for free kick. And these folks have been lined up the wall or whatever to come in and shatter those or is Apolo us positive. Are you playing me?
Harry, Harry, congratulations by Bradford City of Zurich. Remember where we were for two down? Yeah.
He's a free play and panel is a word panel is all turned down. A k goes to me. For the last panel. He gets it. Subs comes walking over to the touchline I don't play Polo. He sits on the floor. I swear in front it
crosses his arms.
I don't play.
We're losing for too
quick. They nicked
Apollo to Kenya It was like the old MCAS network before you
were back in the game. Sadly, two minutes late. It goes through Spain for all
they're pulling the ball is a replay, something that he really didn't want either when I was really looking forward to I thought would be a good idea.
You know, give him a goal because I'd like to go to Elland Road on issues you know, I've been up there for a few years
Glen Rosa had him also in western. I remember lots of manager and and Honda Ramos with whom we've won many trophy in in Seville. Okay. And, you know, like a lot of manager who's the best manager? There's a difference between the two. I would say when they're honest.
Because it's been like
it's been, we've been we've been winning lots of we have won lots of trophies with him. Lots of titles, important title with him. And I think he has a very good approach of football approach also of people. Okay, this is really people management, people management is really sweet. I think it's almost half of the job when you're a manager. So is doing that. Which league is best at La Liga, or the Premiership
in terms of in terms of football quality?
I would say I was
I cannot say any more. So, I would say that in terms of skill, and, and purely skill and technical. Quality. laliga. Yeah. In terms of show entertainment, entertainment. There is there is
the Premiership is the best and and if I have to watch a Premiership game, I can watch any game. Even the two last bottom of the league, you know, I can watch because it's going to be very, I say that to people people don't understand. Yeah. It's nice. It's nice. I like it the way they the spirit, the British period on the field is really Pacific. Okay, so Okay, that's funny questions. Now, who is the best that you've played with?
The best player I've played with this complicated.
I think that the one who impressed me more, I was young. It's Sonia Anderson. When I was in, he played in Barcelona and Brazilian play played in, in Leone with me, he came to kneel. And for me, it was like, Oh, it's you know, and he was doing some
unbelievable stuff. You know, and I was young, so I was more impressed. impressed. Okay, but after I would say,
play against here. I can tell you many players. Okay, but play with. I didn't get impressed. As you know, many, many players. But yeah, maybe Yeah. A few players but against you. A lot of players. Okay against that. Missy.
These three are unbelievable. So you agree this past on a team, the best football team that's ever
the best football team that the history has ever known? I think on the pitch what is it that that makes that you know, that makes it so difficult? Why is it that everyone says the same thing on the pitch? What's happening? We're watching it and just seeing poetry in motion. But what are you feeling on the pitch? Are you just being thrown around? I mean, yeah, this is a concept of
under their own skin on you know, it's like, they know exactly what their movements should be on the pitch. And so it makes you it makes it very difficult for you to catch the ball. Because everybody is in movement. And everybody knows
somebody. So so so yeah, it's it's you you almost feel dizzy when you're in the middle and the ball just go up.
Do you think is the this is an argument that one has the best player ever?
Ever? Yes. In your opinion.
There is the old competition between the alien Maradona and
when I was a kid, I loved it. Okay, because I had more maybe I had more videotape than Madden at home. So I was always watching this video so so I would say I would say put it on camera. Denizer is a great player and recently, missy. And I think the history will say if the biggest ever is either messy or poorly or Maradona, you know, but we have to wait a little bit with messy too.
He's not waterproof yeah he's young he's young so so I think if
if he still goes into that direction of being the best I think he can be the best player ever.
And what's the best call that you've scored
the stadium and it
was a very lucky lucky tree
It was about 4040 yards or something like this and you know just long keep from the from the our goalkeeper yes and I remember I touched the first ball points give it back with the head a difficult ball bouncing like this and I see you know the bolts and and no one so so close I said okay I do it without thinking and beam and
into the back of the neck
oh my goodness may water cracker
unshackled unleashed unstoppable
killers first time Paul, can you tell me where the initial flake it came back off pilot? And how he hit that?
Like a missile into the top corner?
outside the box? No, that's right. That's right. Because I'm more like,
connection players and and when I arrived into the boxes, it's for the last is for the last shot not to get around the box and trying to get a shot outside the box. That's right, that I'm more about connection player or even sometimes giving the last pass? Or, you know, and what time when I'm into the boxes to finish the thing. You know, you're gonna really upset a lot of people in Cydia
and but but, you know, in,
in exchange for that,
much more goals in Sevilla. Also the you know, the,
the numbers, the, you know, the titles, the everything in severe was, like, much more than in any other clubs of your ledger. I mean, let's be fair,
you know, the people fill fill something for me, you know, in severe straits, you know, where when, wherever I go where, you know, the people received me with, you know, and yeah, that's right, there is a connection. Someone asked, What's the best for you at a scene?
What do you actually say, Okay, let me get you when you've actually seen physically and another one that you just know, like, a famous poem that the best of us know, there is one of the Yeah, this is a bit funny that the goal that marathoners called to the World Cup of 86 I guess. Yeah. Oh, sorry.
The call Mrs. calls a couple of years ago.
it's almost the same. Yeah.
It was a bit funny because there were in the Spanish TV they were like comparing dividing the TV into Yes. And showing exactly the you know, the it was unbelievable. Have you ever have you ever heard the Arabic commentary to that goal?
The messy one, the messy one? No. I wrote about five years or however many years ago I posted yesterday on DMS. The commentator keeps saying all the way from beginning yesterday. Yesterday. yesterday. Yesterday is the most incredible
metallic metallic metallic
teeny up pretty much achieved everything in your career. Right? We have to remind ourselves that we talk about names like George, where the the eyedropper African Footballer of the Year, but you will also African promoter of the amateur, not 2007. Right? You pretty much achieved, you know what everyone could possibly I wanted to shoot in football. Are there any regrets? That you think that, you know, I wished I could have done this professionally.
regrets? No, no, I think you know, I really believe into my own destiny. And I'm really satisfied, not satisfied in the self
satisfaction, but satisfying the in the, in the, in the way of
what I had inside. I've given up. I've given everything that I had inside. And, and I feel I feel good about what I've done. Even though you you can always do more and ask more from yourself. But, but I'm really happy. I've been as you said, in 2007 for Africa, which was one of the best professional day of my life because this is you know, to represent Africa.
In football also not only in charity but in the world. So for me, it was a really important thing into my into my career. What is that the biggest highlights of your career? Would you say that was the biggest highlights of your career?
Being African Player of the Year, one of the biggest Yeah, one of the biggest and the I think the
misspelling in Seville, also, okay, because it was unbelievable. The first two, three years, we were winning, like, everything we could we could possibly win. Apart from Champions League and Liga, we are winning all the competition, all of the you know, and it was Yeah. And we say the first European Cup of one was one of the best turn into Madrid. There are a lot of people, young Muslims, who are, you know, there are people out here and they want to become obviously successful. Do you think? Because there's a question here about advice to young Muslims? Do you think that most Do you think that that person is born to be a good footballer? Or do you think that it really is about practice
and skill and continual practice and you make yourself into both the both kinds of people, some people have got more natural skin and natural tendency to be good footballer.
And if they work on it's very hard, they can be very successful. Some people haven't got no skill at all. And they can be very good. Not excellent, but very, very good shot through work.
And in life, this is the same, and some people are very skillful, very natural, naturally skillful and
big talents, but they don't do nothing. And a lot of people I know they are like this, because they don't work. So what's your advice to young Muslims?
Whether they're good or not, they have to work. Okay, I have to work and two, they have to get self confidence, but without
losing this quality of work. And, and, and, and they should, yeah, they should, they should work a lot. They should work a lot and not losing confidence and not losing their dreams. So let's close with this. What is your remaining big ambition? What's left for Friday, um, a
lot of things in terms of charity work. First, I think I'm getting more and more involved into my charity work. So So
To be fair, you know, I realized more and more that body to important
Things like this, you know, I really liked that. And I think I would, I would, I'm telling you that also because I mean many because we've just done the launch and this is really important for me right now, you know, and and I would like to, to,
to to go into that direction and and you know that sakeena village
is full of young
talented, talented young
young people, young lads and that these people, these young kids become some important people into
changing the African society towards what is better for for for money for example, and I have many other Wish
we wish you the very best