When the Super Eagles of Nigeria lost to South Africa, some of the excuses was that Carl Ikeme was not fit to play and that before the important World Cup qualifiers against Cameroon in August, the 31-year-old would be fit.
But Nigerian football fans were hit with a low punch Thursday with news that the Eagles No.1 had been diagnosed with acute leukemia and he would be starting chemotherapy.
Just like that!
All sorts of goodwill messages poured in and the importance or thereabout was forgotten for the moment. The life and wellbeing of the soft-spoken Ikeme suddenly became more important.
This is wishing him a full recovery.
And we were still reeling from this bad news that a worse one filtered in on Friday.
Six-year-old Bradley Lowrey finally rested from his battle with neuroblastoma on Friday.
The chubby-faced Sunderland fan passed away after a very gallant battle with the cancer that devastated his young body since diagnosis in 2013.
So, in a season when football goes mad and mad amounts of dollars are used to trade for players, Lowrey’s death showed – with the response from far and wide — hat this beautiful game is still about love for our fellow human being.
What would football be without a worthy opponent? That is why non-violence in the game should be looked at as a candid way of teaching that competition is not to the death because they that lose today can win tomorrow.
There will always be things that are more important than the game of football despite the humongous amounts that have become the pillars of the game. For death is final, no second chance, no coming back for the second leg, it is a final goodbye. Rest in peace, Bradley.