Bintang sepak bola Frederic Kanoute telah menghabiskan lebih dari US$700,000 untuk membeli sebuah Masjid di Spanyol. Masjid itu terletak di kota Seville, tempat dimana dia bermain untuk klub nya, Sevilla. Masjid pribadi yang sebelumnya dimiliki oleh masyarakat muslim lokal itu kontraknya telah habis, Kanoute pun langsung segera membelinya.
Finalis dari BBC African Footballer of the Year award tahun 2007 yang berumur 30 tahun itu belum mengeluarkan komentar resmi akan hal ini. Diperkirakan Kanoute menghabiskan gaji setahun-nya demi menyelamatkan Masjid ini. Kanoute merupakan seorang muslim sejati yang telah menjadi muallaf semenjak 10 tahun yang lalu.
Pada seri terakhir, dia melakukan hal yang cukup kontroversial, yaitu me-lakban logo sponsor pada kaos klub bola nya, yaitu 888.com – “Agama-ku melarang mempromosikan judi”, Ujarnya. (wahyulive.wordpress.com)
RAMADHAN FAST EMPOWERS KANOUTE
Super striker Frederic Kanoute, who plays in the Spanish football league, the world’s most watched, is not only keen on fasting the holy month of Ramadan, but also see fasting as empowering.
“I try to respect my faith and follow it as best I can,” Kanoute told Goal.com, the world’s leading website for soccer fans, on Monday, August 24.
During Ramadan, adult Muslims, save the sick and those traveling, abstain during daylight hours from food, drink, smoking and sex.
|“There are many Muslim footballers who people just do not know about in England, Spain, France and in many other leagues too,” asserted Kanoute, the striker of Spain’s Seville FC.
“But having faith and practicing Ramadan is not something they wish to tell the world about.”
The 32-year-old striker insists, however, that observing Ramadan is not causing him any problems with his club or fans.
“Everyone here has been very good to me and they understand,” asserts Kanoute, a French Malian origin.
“During Ramadan I give my all for my club and try not to let my team-mates and the fans down.”
Kanoute, known for his pace, strength and technique, has helped his Seville FC qualify for a UEFA Cup position in 2008 and a Champions League direct qualification in 2009.
He was named the 2007 African Footballer of the Year, the first foreign-born player to win the prestigious title.
Kanoute was one of the finalists for the 2007 BBC African Footballer of the Year award.
Kanoute says adhering to his religious obligations makes him stronger and better.
“Personally, having faith helps my football and football helps me to be healthy and strengthens me,” he asserted.
“There is no conflict because people who know about Islam, they know that fasting empowers and does not weaken the Muslim.”
Doctor Yacine Zerguni, a member of the FIFA and CAF Sports Medical Committees, agrees.
Zerguni has collaborated with F-marc, the FIFA Medical Assessment and Research Centre, in a study on the effects of observing Ramadan.
“This month of physical and mental self discipline, which must also be free from any unhealthy or aggressive behavior,” he told Goal.com, when asked if Ramadan was compatible with the practice of top-level football.
“Ramadan is intended be a period of internal purification and meditation; a period of regeneration.
“It is far from harmful.”
Kanoute is known to be an observing Muslim who regularly performs his prayers even in the locker room.
Last year he refused to wear a jersey advertising for an internet gambling site because gambling is forbidden in Islam.
His team had to give him a brand-free jersey until he accepted wearing the sponsored jersey in return for money to an Islamic charity.
In 2007, he saved the only mosque in the southern Spanish city of Seville from closure.
Kanoute paid 510,860 euros (some $700,000) so that fellow Muslims in Seville would not find themselves without a mosque.
He has created a foundation in his motherland Mali to help orphans.