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Francis Benali Gets MBE In New Years Honours List
Friday, 27th Dec 2019 22:51

Francis Benali has been awarded an MBE in the New Years Honours list for his services to charity, a fitting award for his untiring efforts.

Francis Benali has been made an MBE after raising a “phenomenal” £1 million for cancer victims.

Benali will receive the honour for services to cancer patients in the UK for enduring seven Ironman-distance triathlons over seven days in aid of charity Cancer Research.

The 50-year-old ex-Saint swam 2.4 miles, cycled 112 miles and ran a marathon every day for a week earlier this year.

It was the Saint's legend's third fundraising challenge for the charity. He also completed a sponsored cycle to every Premier League and Championship stadium in 2016, and in 2014 ran to all Premier League grounds.

A phenomenal achievement for a man who in the 1990's was considered one of the hardest men in the Premier League but in reality was the nicest most humble professional footballer you could ever meet.

The comment from the man himself was typically humble.

“I am truly humbled and immensely proud to receive this honour. Love and thanks to my wife, children, family, friends and team who have supported me in every way.”🏅"

So this recognition is a fitting tribute and i'm sure that all Saints fans will feel a sense of pride in perhaps one of the greatest sons of Southampton City has not only achieved this monumental task, something that he had no need to do other than in giving back something to those in life less fortunate than himself, but he is now Francis Benali MBE.

Congratulations Francis Benali, not only one of the nicest footballers I have ever met but also one of the nicest persons I have ever had the privilege to meet.

Photo: Action Images

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steve73 added 03:26 - Dec 28
Maybe not the best saints player ever to pull on the shirt (although not half bad), but certainly the one that saints are most proud of to call their own. Fantastic bloke, role model, legend. Still never forget that game against Sunderland under Souness. Midweek away, biting cold, snow. A six pointer. He kept them out by himself, one of the most committed displays from anyone I've ever seen. And we nicked it 1-0 thanks to him and stayed up. Got home at 6am and started work at 630 with a smile on my face. You don't forget days like those. Got a bit carried away but yeah, a well deserved MBE 👍👍👍

the_saint added 08:47 - Dec 28
Every team needs a benali the type of player that goes into tackles that he has no right to win and then gives it to the gifted players (le tiss) well deserved MBE for his services to charity.

SaintPaulVW added 10:42 - Dec 28
Fantastic news. Well earned.

1970 added 10:43 - Dec 28
Well done Franny were all proud of you m8, maybe he can solve our full back problems if he can do all those iron man challenges, it would be funny to see Franny up against today's bunch of pansies coyr .

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Letters from Wiltshire #09 by wessex_exile
Letters from Wiltshire #08 by wessex_exile
Lots of discussion this week on football forums, including here, on two subjects – the petition to lobby parliament to allow limited numbers of supporters back into football grounds, and of course the return of that old chestnut from Man City Chief Executive Ferran Soriano, introducing Premier League ‘B’ teams into the EFL. First off, I don’t mind admitting I’ve signed the petition ( https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/552036 ), as have 192,779 others at the time of writing, though I don’t actually think it’ll make any difference. I can completely understand why some do not think this is a good idea, as second-wave spikes of coronavirus infection pop up all over the country (mainly because – let’s face it – some people are dicks and can’t be trusted to sit the right way on a toilet). But to me, the two go hand in hand (not dicks and toilets) – whilst football clubs throughout the country struggle financially without spectators, we are always going to be under threat of this sort of ‘B’ team nonsense as a condition of financial support from the Premier League fat cats. They got their way in 2016 with the EFL trophy, who’s to say they won’t again when the financial squeeze really starts to tighten its grip without paying customers through the turnstiles? Robbie has featured prominently in this debate in recent weeks, and looks like he will again on Sky tomorrow if this tweet from Sophy Ridge is anything to go by -
Letters from Wiltshire #07 by wessex_exile

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