May 30, 2011, 12:57 PM
Mariama Njie, common known as the girl who loves football, who founded the President Jammeh Football Academy in Tallinding, has called on companies, coaches and anyone who can help her academy, to come forward and support it.
She also called on coaches to come out and help her categorize the academy (in U-7, U-10 and U-13) but also appealed for training materials (jerseys, footballs, corns, boots, beets and shocks) to anybody who can help them in either cash or kind.
The West Coast Radio Sports reporter trainee, who quit her job as a waitress because of her love for football, stated that her motivation in naming the Academy after President Jammeh is because of the President’s love and support for football and sports in general, saying the President is her mentor.
She noted that her aim is to see that the academy grows beyond Tallinding, to even form a female academy as well as a wrestling academy, which she also intends to name after the President because of his hard work and love for sport.
She remarked that running an academy as a lady is not easy but as a human being one needs to believe in oneself. She also thanked her family and everyone supporting her in one way or the other.
Ms Njie said she runs the academy with the little money she has including the five dalasi each player contributes every Sunday.
The beginning of everything is always difficult, she went on, but that the most important thing is just to believe in oneself and have faith in God and also focus in what one is doing.
She said she is ready to run the academy to the fullest, which is the first of its kind run by a lady in the country and named after the President, adding that all she is asking for from the players is commitment, hard work and discipline.
She stated that her life is football as she has sacrificed her waitress job because of her love for football. She added that she formed the academy on 28 July 2012.
Bunja Ceesay, Mariama’s assistant in her remarks, stated that the aim of forming the academy is to produce national players for the country and that what they have put in the players would help them achieve this aim.
Ceesay also joined Ms Njie in appealing to the general public for support, adding that it is a new initiative and the first of its kind formed by a lady in the country.