Ricky Zililo, Senior Sports Reporter
South African-based Zimbabwe winger Gabriel Nyoni has warned fellow players against risking their careers by participating in money games.
The Cape Umoya forward in the South African First Division was told by his doctor that his career might be over after suffering severe broken foot bones resulting in wires and pins being used to balance the bones.
Nyoni has been ruled out of action for at least eight months after suffering the nasty foot injury during a Glad Africa Championship match for his Cape Umoya side against Richards Bay.
While Nyoni is lucky that he picked up the injury in an official match and his team is covering the medical bills, he sent a “friendly” warning to his peers, especially Zimbabwean players, who have been competing in money games during the Covid-19, that should they be injured in unsanctioned matches, their careers will be over.
“As a professional soccer player, desist from playing unsanctioned money games. It may be justifiable considering the economic condition worsened by the pandemic, but the consequences of a career threatening injury without support outweighs the immediate benefit,” Nyoni tweeted.
The Cape Umoya winger has been using social media to share positive messages with fellow footballers.
In one post, Nyoni made an impassioned plea to his fellow players to appreciate work done by frontline health workers risking their lives during the Covid-19 pandemic.
He dispelled the notion that footballers are heroes, expressing his “heartfelt” gratitude to all essential workers that are helping during the lockdown.
“Football players, do we now understand that we are entertainers and not heroes. When the world goes back to its beautiful original state, let’s respect every fan. Some of them are nurses, doctors, defence force personnel, who are risking their lives right now to save ours,” he wrote. – @ZililoR