Man Utd's Ferdinand keen to launch Nigeria soccer academy

Manchester United defender Rio Ferdinand is planning to launch a soccer school in Nigeria.

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Ferdinand will return to Nigeria for the second time this summer when the Reds play Portsmouth at the Abuja Stadium on 28 July.

Two weeks after lifting the Champions League trophy in Moscow, Ferdinand was a guest of the state governor of Lagos, Babatunde Raji Fashola, and his first engagement was launching the Lagos Street Soccer Championships, an initiative that aims to empower young children through sport, while also helping unearth Nigerian footballing prodigies.

"There are huge talents here that can be as big as Yakubu or Kanu," Ferdinand said.

"They just need someone to inspire them and make them believe in themselves. With what I've seen, I can help build an academy here that will see the best of Nigerian talent realise their dreams of being a professional footballer. The power of football here is unbelievable."

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