Bafana Bafana

Radebe chuffed with award

2014-07-16 07:33
Lucas Radebe (Gallo)
Johannesburg - Former Bafana Bafana and Leeds United captain Lucas Radebe was thrilled after being honoured with a life-time achievement award at the Gauteng Sports Awards on Saturday night.

“Rhoo” received his prestigious accolade at a glittering ceremony held at Monte Casino in Johannesburg.

The Gauteng Member of Executive Council (MEC) of Sport, Art, Culture and Recreation Molebatsi Bopape presented the Diepkloof born defender with his much desired award on the night.

An emotional Radebe then expressed his delight as he revealed that he never imagined playing professional football, let alone playing in England and representing the national team.

Radebe, 45, also announced that an amount of R30 000 awarded to him will be donated to a children's charity.

"Thank you to the Gauteng Province for nominating me," said Radebe.

"When I started playing football in a dusty pitch of Diepkloof, I never thought that I will end up where I did.

"I played football because I love the game.

"I didn’t play football because of the awards, recognition, or personal achievements.

"As a black South African back then, I never imagined myself captaining an English Premiership team (Leeds United), let alone the national team in two consecutive World Cups.

"And by this achievement, I feel more motivated to continue working in this industry so that I could inspire the upcoming generations.

"And I am also proud to announce that this R30 000 that I won, will be donated to children in need."

Radebe played for Kaizer Chiefs before heading to Europe in 1993.

He then captained Bafana at both  the 1998 FIFA World Cup in France and in 2002 in South Korea and Japan.

Radebe scored two international goals while garnering 70 caps for the national team.

The 'Chief' was also part of the 1996 African Cup of Nations (AFCON) winning team under Clive Barker’s reign on home soil.  

Radebe also captained Leeds for more than a decade, guiding them to the UEFA Champions League semi-finals in the 2000/01 season where they lost to Valencia.

Radebe retired from football at the end of the 2004/05 season.

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