African footballers are known for spending their money flamboyant and lavishly - flashing it on girls and in clubs. They are criticized for forgetting their humble backgrounds and going bankrupt at the brink of their careers, such as Zimbabwean former footballer Peter Ndlovu who was the first African to play in England but has nothing to show for it. However, the current troop of footballers has vowed to leave an indelible mark in their African countries.
Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane quickly come to my mind because they have gone overboard this year alone in terms of assisting their community roots.
Mohamed Salah built a hospital, school, and youth center in this hometown, Nagrig in Egypt. In addition, he paid $450 000 to buy land to build a water treatment plant to provide drinking water. Furthermore, he spends £3 500 monthly on charity.
Just 29 years of age, Mo Salah plays for premier league side Liverpool. He also plays for his national team Egypt. In addition, he has played for big teams; Chelsea and Roma.
Mo Salah funded the first ambulance unit in his hometown. Mohamed Salah bought a rheumatoid arthritis detection machine for £10 000 in his hometown, Nagrig.
He donated £50 000 to Tanta University hospital in Egypt. Then, as if that wasn't enough, he used his bonus for scoring the goal that sent Egypt to the 2018 World Cup to buy medical supplies for his people.
The £10 000 arthritis detection device Salah bought is used by 50 people daily.
When a thief burgled into Mohamed Salah's family house in Egypt, Salah refused to press charges and have him arrested. He found a job for him instead.
A philanthropist at heart!
Sadio Mane is originally from Bambali, Senegal. His inspiration to champion philanthropic work probably emanates from the experience of losing his father to a stomach illness, with no hospital nearby the village to assist him.
He built a school in his village worth £270 000, a hospital, and a stadium for his people. The town, which is 400 kilometers outside Dakar's capital, did not previously have a hospital.
He gives each family £70 monthly and provides free clothes to kids.
Sadio Mane is a professional football player. He plays for the premier league club, Liverpool. He finished fourth for the 2019 Ballon d'Or, and in the award for the Best FIFA Men's player, he ranked fifth in 2019 and fourth in 2020.
The 29-year old earns a salary of £5.2 million. In August, Mane met with President Macky Sall to discuss the hospital project, which includes departments for maternity care, dental facilities, and consulting rooms.
In 2020 during the coronavirus outbreak, Mane donated £41 000 to health authorities in Senegal.
Many other African footballers are changing the face of their African nations, such as Samuel Etoo, Marvelous Nakamba, dedicating their money and time to infrastructural development and administration of football.