Happy birthday to one of African football’s great trailblazers. Nwankwo Kanu is among the most decorated footballers of his generation, clocking up winners medals in the Premier League, FA Cup, Champions League, UEFA Cup and Olympic Games. Kanu’s sauce on the pitch made him an all-time Arsenal legend, where he became the club’s first Nigerian player and a member of the 2004 Invincibles squad. Today, Kanu is a UNICEF ambassador, an Officer of the Order of Niger and leads his own charity, the Kanu Heart Foundation. Kanu is a hero on and off the pitch.
Arsenal legend Nwankwo Kanu is bringing an all-star charity match to London in honour of a noble cause.
Kanu has announced the first ever ‘Petrolex Kanu Cup’ will take place at Barnet FC’s The Hive on September 30th, with the game aiming to raise money for a new Cardiac Centre in Abuja, Nigeria to provide children in his native country with life-saving operations.
The game has been announced in partnership with Masters Football and the Kanu Heart Foundation, the charity that Kanu has led since its launch in 2000.
Kanu’s former teammates at Arsenal Sol Campbell, Robert Pires and Lauren have been announced for the game so far, with another wave of legends set to be confirmed before the big kick off.
Speaking on his charity work, Kanu said:
“Since retiring from football, the Kanu Heart Foundation has been my biggest passion. It is amazing to be in a position to have helped over 500 children within and outside Nigeria gain access to vital heart operations, having suffered from heart conditions myself – but I want to do more.”
Kanu became one of the most popular players in the world late in the 20th century following his heroics with Arsenal and Nigeria. won an Olympic gold medal with his country, a UEFA Champions League title with Ajax and two Premier League titles and three FA Cups with Arsenal. He was also awarded African Player of the Year on two occasions.
Tickets for The Petrolex Kanu Cup are now available from Masters Football.