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Sundowns President: Barca Friendly Will Inspire Youth


President Patrice Motsepe might want to see the Absa Premiership champion’s well disposed with Spanish monsters Barcelona propel the adolescent to seek after their fantasies.

The Brazilians, who won the league for a record eighth time, will host the La Liga champions in an international friendly at the FNB Stadium on Wednesday May 16 at 18:00.

Barcelona will bring their star players including Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez, Andres Iniesta, Gerard Pique and Philippe Coutinho.

“This game is important for South African football,” Motsepe said.

“We are humbled as Mamelodi Sundowns to play our part in a match that’s also part of the Nelson Mandela Centenary celebrations. But this is mainly for the youth.

“I know how big this is for the youth. I remember when I was a young follower of football and I went to the Orlando Stadium and watched all the great players.

“They inspired me. Some of them are alive today and they don’t know it was such an honour for me to just touch them. There are many young footballers who we know that watching Messi and Iniesta will inspire them to realise their dreams, whatever dreams those might be.”

There will be a number of dignitaries who will be in attendance in this match that will be beamed all over the world. This will be the second time that Sundowns play Barcelona in the country. The Catalan giants faced Masandawana in a 2-1 win at Loftus Versfeld in 2007.

“We have been approached by many teams over the years and we don’t talk about it,” Motsepe said.

“The most important constituency for us is the constituency from the location and rural areas. I go to Kenya on safari and I was pleased to see how far the Mamelodi Sundowns’ brand has gone.

“As I arrived in the hotel in Kenya, the staff came running, saying that we were told that there is a Motsepe coming. We didn’t know who it was.

“But they were excited when they saw that it’s Sundowns’ Motsepe. Some of the best brands in the world build the brand worldwide. The seven top teams in this country have the potential to be brands in Africa and globally.”

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