Ex-Super Eagles striker and former African Footballer of the Year, Victor Ikpeba, has contributed N100,000 to support the Nigeria Amputee Football team to attend the 2018 Amputee Football World Cup.
“The Prince of Monaco”, as he is fondly known, said he was touched by the plight of the amputee team when he saw them at the National Stadium last Friday where he graced the Lagos SWAN Cup finals, and has been moved to chip in his little might to help the team realize their dream.
“I was touched when I saw them at the stadium. Anybody can be an amputee. It takes just a stroke of faith. But it is inspiring to see them take to football even with their physical challenge and more so that they can make a career of it. It is always encouraging to see them prove that they can contribute to our world regardless of fate”, he pointed out.
“I understand that they have, through their personal contributions, sponsored themselves to about four Africa Amputee Nations Cup before now, and had qualified for three previous editions of the World Cup but couldn’t attend because no one supported with needed funds. They are at the brink of missing out of the fourth because of money. We shouldn’t allow this to happen to them. It will be very demoralizing to them. I wish I had more to give. I can only appeal to Nigerians to give whatever little or much they can. Let’s support these guys.”
The Nigeria Amputee Football team recently launched an appeal for public donations to help them raise funds to attend the Amputee Football World Cup after their requests for sponsorship to both government and corporate institutions have had no response.
They require about N40m to take care of their return flight tickets, pre-tournament camping, procurement of standard sports equipment, medical supplies, upkeep and other logistics at the event holding in Mexico between October 24 and November 5.
Nigeria is grouped along side Russia, Brazil and El Salvador in the first round. Other African nations to the 24 countries competition are Ghana, Angola, Kenya and Liberia, with the Ghanaians already camping in England and playing tune up friendly matches, from where they will proceed to Mexico.