Sport Relief? How About Helping Those Underprivileged Footballers?

Luke TaylorCorrespondent IIMarch 19, 2010

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 21:  Shaun Wright-Phillips of Manchester City looks on  during the Barclays Premier League match between Manchester City and Liverpool at City of Manchester Stadium on February 21, 2010 in Manchester, England.  (Photo by Jamie McDonald/Getty Images)
Jamie McDonald/Getty Images

Tonight, the BBC will hold a night of charity-based TV, in the hope of raising money to help improve the lives of disadvantaged youths around the world.


The wonderful project helps raise money that can be used to educate street children, buy malaria nets, or improve local community projects to help underprivileged children.


This does however, leave one glaring question.


What are they going to do to help underprivileged footballers?


Egyptian footballer Mido recently joined West Ham on a paltry salary of £1,000 a week. Now how is he going to live a happy life on a wage like that?


Even if his millions of pounds worth of savings helped him afford a swanky pad in East London, he’s hardly going to be living in the conditions any footballer deserves.


Will Mido be able to afford the bottles of Dom Perignon he has become so accustomed to? Will his house even have a sauna, hot tub, or steam room? Finally, will be able to live with a pond full of goldfish – not Koi Carp.


His teammates must look at Mido’s appalling living conditions and wonder why West Ham don’t do more to help. They are shocked that their friend may never be able to afford a yacht.


How is he expected to live like this? Why can we not help him?


The truth is that Mido is one of several footballers struggling to get by. Desperate to prove himself, he was forced into playing for petty cash – not a real footballing salary.


But there are thousands more, just like poor Mido.


A few years ago, Ashley Cole was playing for the team he loved. He was adored. Then, Arsenal turned their back on a man they called their own.


They had the cheek to offer Ashley £55,000 a week. A distraught Ashley asked: “are they taking the p*ss?” They weren’t. They were being deadly serious. All Ashley wanted was extra £5,000, but the greedy executives would not allow it.


This appalling treatment of a loyal employee led to his departure from the club. They should have been grateful for his service. Instead, they humiliated him.


Fortunately for Ashley, he was able to land on his feet. He was able to sign a contract for a much more respectable £90,000 per week at Chelsea.


Others might not be so lucky…


Shaun Wright-Phillips is currently struggling to survive on a pitiful £60,000 a week at the world’s richest club, Manchester City. He isn’t even allowed to play regularly.


Young Shaun does have some hopes for a higher standard of living. His multi-billionaire employers own a fortune, and Shaun is hoping for a reasonable weekly wage of £120,000, (plus maybe a bit more time to kick a football every week).


Even his father is distraught. Ian Wright, (who himself had to play on a pathetic football salary in front of thousands of adoring fans for many years), is supporting his son to the last.


Ian claims Shaun is being “mugged off” and being “treated like a youth team player”, a particularly well-paid youth team player, but a youth team player all the same.


Surely, Manchester City’s practises of “mugging off” average players who have become too big for their boots must stop? Ian certainly thinks so.


Perhaps it’s time we all help these poor, underprivileged individuals. You can make a difference to the lives of these men.


Mido would not have to live on what is essentially minimum wage. He could buy that yacht he so desires.


Ashley would not have had to leave a club he was loyal to. We could have given him that extra £5,000 a week that he deserved.


Shaun will be able to stay at Manchester City and won’t be “mugged off” any longer. He could have his deserved £60,000 pay rise.


You could help do all this. If you can donate to this worthy cause, footballers all over the world could have the life they deserve.


We need your help. Every donation counts, no matter how small. Give footballers a chance in life.  Let’s help them do the job we would all love to do, for even more money. After all, why shouldn’t they make hundreds of thousands of pounds for two hours work every week?


Please give generously.


Go to for more details.