This week had been marred with a few tragedies in this beautiful sport of ours.
As most of you must be aware by now, this past Sunday, we had lost a great footballer and an up and coming manager, but mostly a great individual who was widely respected and loved off the field.
While having some free time at work, I was able to quickly jump on to my Twitter page to see what’s happening. Eyes couldn’t believe the tweets it was reading.
Suddenly, my mind was sending me back signals, asking me, did I read it right? There was a spontaneous and deliberate movement of the brows. Browsed my ways to a few other websites to see if the reports were true. And it was.
Gary Speed – Mr. nice guy of football, dead, at the age 42. It was only a day earlier that he was laughing about while filming Football Focus with Dan Walker. And the next day, his soul was taken away. The seasoned professional had always been appreciated both as a player and a manager. His recent stint with the Welsh national team had taken them to new heights in international football. In fact, they were reckoned to be one of the favorites to qualify for the Finals in Brazil, under his successful leadership. Just a shame not only for football, but for life as the guy was a positive influence on everyone he came to contact with.
There is speculation that he battled depression but one will never know until the final truth is revealed. No matter what, he will always remain the person the global football community had come to known; which can only be justified by the tributes being received from all over the world, from athletes, managers and the fans alike.
In another incident, one that took place on Saturday, this time down south in Africa, about 100 miles away from Lome (Capital of Togo), 6 members of the Etoile Filante football club lost their lives, while other 25 members were admitted to the hospital with serious injuries and burns. The reason: One of the tyre’s of the bus had burst which led to the bus, they were travelling in, plummeting down into a ravine and catching fire instantly.
This unfortunate tragedy comes no later than at a time when the country was healing from a fateful incident that took place last year. This is where two members of the national team had lost their lives as rebels attacked the bus while on its way to Angola.
FYI: This was the reason that led to Adebayor announcing his early retirement from the national team.
These guys might not be as popular as Gary Speed was but it is only right to say that our thoughts and prayers will be with the family members of the Welshman as well as the members of Etoile Filante who lost their lives.
Eventually, life in general is more precious than this beautiful sport of ours. These incidents give us an opportunity to reflect at our own lives.
RIP from the entire football community.