Friday, 16 March 2018

WE ARE THE ‘WORLD’: Bolt appointed team captain for upcoming charity football match for UNICEF

GAME ON: "My team is going to be unbeatable," says the icon, who will be clad in his 9.58 jersey.

“IT’s my dream to make it as a professional footballer. To play against some of football’s biggest legends is going to be remarkable,” says Usain Bolt, who is gearing up to take the field in a few months at Old Trafford, the home base of his all-time favourite football club side, Manchester United.

Occasion is the 2018 iteration of the Soccer Aid charity football match, set to raise much-needed funds to support the global work of the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF). The match takes place on June 10.

Bolt has signed on to captain the World XI side, which will go up against an England XI, captained by Robbie Williams, who has at least one confirmed teammate already – Sir Mo Farah, who has thrown down the gauntlet. He says Bolt had better bring it. “Usain has the speed but I have the stamina, so we’ll see who comes out on top at the end of the 90 minutes,” says the many-time World and Olympic champion. 

Bolt says he’s undaunted. “My team is going to be unstoppable,” boasts the 31-year-old sprint legend, who also wants the English side to know that, “I won’t be going easy on them.” Bolt, who recently showed off his 9.58 jersey on social media, says he has a special celebration planned for when the World XI seals the victory. 

Held every two years, the Soccer Aid charity match brings together celebrities and football legends from across the world to compete as a World XI and an England XI. First held in 2006, the event has already raised over £24 million for UNICEF. Will Ferrell, Maradona and Ronaldinho are some of the big names who’ve laced up their boots over the years to support the worthy cause. 

Says UNICEF, “We’re providing life-saving food, vaccines, clean water and protection from violence to millions of children around the world.”

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