ZIMBABWE international footballer, Marshall Munetsi was awarded for his philanthropic work off the football pitch during the 31st edition of the French National Professional Football Players Union (UNFP) trophy ceremony that was held in Paris on Sunday evening.
The 26-year-old Warriors midfielder who plays for French League 1’s Stade de Reims won the Citizen’s Player Award, which rewards players for their impact off the pitch. The in-form Munetsi was rewarded for his commitment to education.
“For me, this is a really special trophy because it’s something that is outside of football, it’s something that is about helping other people so I am grateful that football players are also taking part in helping giving the underprivileged and helping people that are disabled in different aspects of life so I am very grateful to receive this trophy and I hope that we continue to change people’s lives outside football,” said Munetsi after the ceremony.
Through his foundation, Munetsi donates 20 percent of his salary to pay for the education of children in disadvantaged communities in Zimbabwe. Apart from that, the Warriors midfielder and his club Stade de Reims announced a special clause in the player’s new contract which will raise more funds towards his charity initiatives. In the clause, for each kilometre that he runs, his club will donate 100 Euros to his foundation.
“For me, I believe that football is just a career, you can play for 10 or 15 years, but changing the world is something that you do for the rest of your life so I believe that this is something that is important to each and every football player and not only football players but other people, in general, to try and help the next person that is next to you,” he said.
Apart from the prestigious award in France, Munetsi was also honoured by the sport’s governing body, FIFA for his outstanding philanthropic work. –