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George Weah

George Weah (born October 1, 1966 in Monrovia) is a Liberian politician and former football forward. He spent 14 years of his professional football career playing for clubs in France, Italy, and England, winning titles in two of the three countries. In 1995, he was named FIFA World Player of the Year, European Footballer of the Year, and African Footballer of the Year. Weah has since become a humanitarian and politician in Liberia, and ran unsuccessfully in the 2005 Liberian presidential election, losing to Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf in the second round of voting. It is notable that Weah is the only FIFA World Player of the Year who failed to qualify for FIFA World Cup with his national team.

 

Personal life

George Weah was born and raised in the Clara Town slum of Monrovia. He is a member of the Kru ethnic group, which hails from south-eastern Liberia's Grand Kru County, one of the poorest areas of the country. His parents were William T. Weah, Sr. and Anna Quayeweah. He was raised largely by his paternal grandmother, Emma Klonjlaleh Brown. He attended middle school at Muslim Congress and high school at Wells Hairston High School. Before his football career allowed him to move abroad, Weah worked for the Liberia Telecommunications Corporation as a switchboard technician.

Comment "EMMANUEL B. FROM LIBERIA IS TRUE HE WAS THE WORLD GREATEST PLAYER "

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George Weah converted from Christianity to Islam but later reverted back after having spent ten years as a Muslim. He hopes for peace for Muslims and Christians, and says they are "one people."

He is married to Clar Weah, a Jamaican who resides in USA. George Weah is the father of four children: George Jr., Martha, Timothy George, and Jessica, who was adopted from Jamaica. His son, George Weah Jr, plays for FC Baden in Switzerland, and played for the US U-20 team, with his close friend Freddy Adu. He is also good friends with Joshua Smith. Weah Jr. played for the AC Milan Primavera team in the 2005–06 season.

Football career

At the pinnacle of success, Weah moved to Europe in 1988 when he was signed by Arsène Wenger, then manager of Monaco, who Weah credits as an important influence on his career. At Monaco, Weah was a member of the team that won the French Cup in 1991. In the 1990s Weah subsequently played for Paris Saint Germain (1992 - 95), with whom he won the French league in 1994; and AC Milan (1995 - 1999), with whom he won the Italian league in 1996 and 1999, and became the top scorer of the UEFA Champions League 1994–95. In 1995 he was named European Footballer of the Year and FIFA World Player of the Year. After leaving Milan in January 2000 Weah moved to Chelsea, Manchester City and Olympique Marseille in quick succession, before leaving Marseille in May 2001 for Al Jazira FC, in the United Arab Emirates.

As successful as he was at club level, Weah was not able to bring over that success to the Liberian national team. He has done everything with the squad from playing to coaching to financing it, but failed to qualify for a single World Cup, falling just a point short in qualifying for the 2002 tournament. This has all led to Weah being known as one of the best footballers never to have played in a World Cup.

George Weah
Personal information
Full name George Tawlon Oppong Ousman Weah
Date of birth October 1, 1966 (1966-10-01) (age 42)
Place of birth    Monrovia, Liberia
Height 1.84 m (6 ft +12 in)
Playing position Forward
Senior career1
Years Club App (Gls)*
1981–1984
1984–1985
1985–1986
1986–1987
1987–1987
1987–1988
1988–1992
1992–1995
1995–2000
2000
2000
2000–2001
2001–2003
Young Survivors Clareton
Bongrange Company
Mighty Barolle
Invincible Eleven
Africa Sports
Tonnerre Yaoundé
AS Monaco
Paris Saint-Germain
A.C. Milan
Chelsea
Manchester City
Olympique Marseille
Al-Jazira
000 0(0)
002 0(1)
010 0(7)
023 (24)
00 (0)
018 (15)
102 (47)
96 (32)
114 (46)
011 0(4)
007 0(1)
019 0(5)
008 (13)   
National team
1988–2002 Liberia 060 (22)
1 Senior club appearances and goals
counted for the domestic league only and
correct as of 13:42, 08 December 2007 (UTC).
* Appearances (Goals)

World Best Player 1995

Weah was named world best for 1995, becoming the only African player to win the award. He was the fifth recipient of the award. The Silver trophy was won by Paolo Maldini, and the Bronze by Jürgen Klinsmann. The other four recipients were: Lothar Matthaus '91, Marco Van Basten '92, Roberto Baggio '93, and Romario in '94. Weah also won the silver trophy the following year which was won by Brazilian striker Ronaldo. Alan Shearer was awarded the Bronze.

African Player of the Year 1989, 1994 & 1995

Weah won the African player of the year in 1989 when he was with AS Monaco and 1995 with AC Milan, the year he won almost every award a footballer could win. When he won the award in 1989, it was his first major award and he took it back home for the entire country to celebrate, similar to what he did when he won the world best title and the Onze Mondial title

European Player of the Year 1995

Weah won the European Player of the Year in 1995, becoming the only African to win the award. Sports writers from all over Europe voted and awarded Weah as the best player in Europe for the year.

Onze Mondial 1995

  • The French Magazine name Weah as the top player in Europe for 1995
  • Fifa Fair Play Award 1996

African Player of the Century

Weah was voted the African player of the Century by sport journalists from all around the world. This award puts Weah in the company of some of the greatest player to ever played the game. Pelé won the same award as the South American player of the Century and Johan Cruijff as the European player of the century.

Controversy

Weah was banned from six European matches for breaking the nose of the Portuguese defender Jorge Costa on November 20, 1996 in the players' tunnel after AC Milan's draw at FC Porto. Weah said he exploded in frustration after putting up with racist taunting from Costa during both of the teams' matches that fall in the Champions League. Costa, who underwent facial surgery and was sidelined for three weeks, has avoided punishment by the UEFA. Despite the incident Weah still received the FIFA Fair Play Award in 1996.

Humanitarianism

Weah is a devoted humanitarian for his war-torn country. At the 2004 ESPY Awards, he won the Arthur Ashe Courage Award for his efforts. Weah was named by Pelé as one of the top 125 greatest living footballers in March 2004. He has also been named a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador, a role which he has suspended while he pursues a political career.

Football and children

Weah has tried to use football as a way to bring happiness and promote education for children in Liberia. In 1998, Weah launched a CD called Lively Up Africa featuring the singer Frisbie Omo Isibor and eight other African football stars. The proceeds from this CD went to children's programmes in the countries of origin of the athletes involved.

Weah is President of the Junior Professionals, a football team he founded in Monrovia in 1994. As a way to encourage young people to remain in school, the club's only requirement for membership is school attendance. Many of the young people, recruited from all over Liberia, have gone on to play for the Liberian national team.

In 1998 a documentary about Weah's football career at AC Milan was made broadcast on The A - Force BBC-TV, it was made by Pogus Caesar a British award winning producer and director.

Political career

Following the end of Second Liberian Civil War, Weah announced his intention to run for President of Liberia in the 2005 elections, forming the Congress for Democratic Change to back his candidacy. While Weah was a popular figure in Liberia, opponents cited his lack of formal education as a handicap to his ability to lead the country, in contrast with his Harvard-educated opponent, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf. Analysts also noted Weah's lack of experience, calling him a "babe-in-the-woods", while Sirleaf had served as Minister of Finance in the Tolbert administration in the 1970s and had held positions at Citibank, the World Bank and the United Nations. Weah's eligibility to run for Presidency was also called into question as it was reported that he had become a French citizen in his footballing career at Paris St. Germain, but these complaints were rebuffed by the electoral commission in court and Weah was allowed to proceed.

Weah obtained a plurality of votes in the first round of voting on 11 October, garnering 28.3% of the vote. This qualified him to compete in a run-off election against Sirleaf, the second placed candidate. However, he lost the run-off to Sirleaf on 8 November, garnering only 40.6% to 59.4% for Sirleaf. Weah alleged that the election had been rigged through voter intimidation and ballot tampering, and many of his supporters protested the results in the streets of Monrovia. However, after assurances that the vote was fair several prominent African leaders called on Weah's supporters to accept the result with grace and dignity, and Sirleaf became President. The African Union had characterized the elections as "peaceful, transparent, and fair".

Weah's lack education became a campaign issue. He was been highly critical of those who say he is not fit to govern: "With all their education and experience, they have governed this nation for hundreds of years. They have never done anything for the nation." He initially claimed to have a BA degree in Sports Management from Parkwood University in London. However this is an unaccredited diploma mill which awards certificates without requiring study. Weah then pursued a degree in business administration at DeVry University in Miami. Weah also remained active in Liberian politics, returning from the United States in 2009 to successfully campaign for the Congress for Democratic Change candidate in the Montserrado County senatorial by-election. Some analysts saw these moves as preparation for a repeat run for the Presidency in 2011, and Weah did indeed later announce his intention to challenge Sirleaf in the 2011 election. After a series of failed alliances with other opposition parties, the Congress for Democratic Change chose Weah as its 2011 vice presidential candidate, running with presidential candidate Winston Tubman.

Awards and achievements
African Footballer of the Year
1989
African Footballer of the Year
1994
CAF Award Winner
1995
European Footballer of the Year
1995
FIFA World Player of the Year
1995

Comments

EMMANUEL B. FROM LIBERIA IS TRUE HE WAS THE WORLD GREATEST PLAYER

Weah had been once the best player in the world. - Derrick M

The King

He is our next president of Liberia.

The best ever

GEORGE WEAH IS THE GREATEST SOCCER PLAYER EVER.

The best ever



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