Former Bafana Bafana captain, Lucas Radebe.

A+E Networks Africa is proud to announce Lucas Radebe as the Local Brand Ambassador for the History of Football television event. The 14-day, 24/7, mega television event will air in Africa as a dedicated pop-up channel on DStv Channel 187 from May 28 to June 10, 2018.

Radebe, a football legend on the continent, says he is proud and honoured to have been named the Local Ambassador for the History of Football television event, “I was privileged to lead Bafana Bafana to its first ever World Cup, and I understood the gravity of that moment for our country, and for its relevance in the global context of the beautiful game. Local fans, many for the first time, will watch this essential chronicle, not only on the HISTORY Channel itself but on a dedicated pop-up channel leading up to the tournament in Russia.”

A+E Networks Africa General Manager Yusuf Nabee says, “We’re honoured to have a football player as celebrated as Lucas Radebe as the local ambassador of this exciting television event. During his prolific career he established himself as one of the best central defenders in the English Premier League, was part of the Bafana Bafana team which won the African Nations Cup in 1996 and led the national team in its first-ever FIFA World CupTM appearance in France in 1998 and again in Japan/South Korea in 2002. He has a long history with football and is a fitting local ambassador for the History of Football ”.

DStv recently interviewed Lucas Radebe at the History of Football pop-up channel launch:

He said: "It’s great to be here again and witnessing the game on the big stage. It’s exciting as every country is sending the best quality players and the pop-up channel plays a part in making football young again and as the game gets updated, it’s important to look back to the legendary players from the beginning, such as Pele.

"For the players it’s a wonderful opportunity to be involved as individuals who represent their country and represent their counterparts in making the dream come true. Since the inception of the tournament, different clubs and households stand still during big games as football has the power to unite."

Lucas Radebe also said that football is about more than just the celebrity status and the glamour, but before that comes a lot of hard work, dedication and commitment.

"Footballers need to be role models and inspire young people so that the game can grow and develop from the grass roots up. When football players can affect people’s lives and say that ‘it is possible’, that is very motivating. The legendary former Bafana Bafana captain feels very honoured to be the local brand ambassador for the History of Football television event."

The History of Football promo

History of Football will air in over 160 territories around the world in the build-up to the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia. Supported by a number of football heavy weights, including Spanish footballer David Villa as the global press spokesperson, History of Football  promises to offer a deep exploration of the sport from multiple perspectives.

Highlights of the talent line-up for History of Football include: Pelé, the only player to win three FIFA World Cups; Ryan Giggs, the most decorated player in British history and current manager of the Wales national team; Gary Lineker, England’s record holder for goals scored in finals; internationally renowned sports broadcaster, Louis Van Gaal, former manager of Manchester United, Bayern Munich, Ajax Amsterdam and Holland; Philipp Lahm, captain of Germany during the 2014 FIFA World Cup and current Bayern Munich player; Claudio Ranieri, former manager of Leicester City, during their 2016 English Premier League win and current head coach of Nantes; Roy Hodgson, current manager of Crystal Palace in the English Premier League and former manager of England; and Michael Owen, former striker for Manchester United and the England national team; together with a number of players from the FIFA World Cup winning teams of 1970, 1978, 1990, 1998 and 2014, including the likes of Rivellino, Mario Kempes, Lothar Matthaus, Paul Breitner, Toto Schillaci, Emanuel Petit, Christian Karembeu, Manuel and Philip Lahm.

HISTORY has also signed Hyundai Motor Company as a global sponsor of History of Football  in a cross-platform partnership. The agreement to sponsor the ground-breaking History of Football programming event in over 160 territories allows Hyundai Motor Company to showcase the car maker’s long-running partnership with FIFA and its association with the FIFA Men’s World Cup™ since 2002.

During the 14-day pop-up channel, HISTORY will air a slate of original, globally-focused premium documentary series, short form specials and a selection of FIFA World Cup films. The channel will also broadcast locally-sourced television series and documentaries that will offer a unique lens into Africa’s passion for football.