By Barnabas Zulu
FINANCIAL literacy is one of the most ignored topics, if not tiresome and tedious, to our football players, who spend a lot of time and energies on improving their skills through day-to-day trainings and games.
However, this topic is of greater value not only to football players, but also to the public, as it has now become essential for one to understand matters related to finances.
Many at times, we have heard stories on how our once great sports men and women, who used to earn loft salaries in their hey days, have suddenly turned into street beggars, with the recent case being that of former Arsenal and Galatasaray star Emmanuel Eboue.
Emmanuel Eboue, a former Ivorian international, was one of the highest paid African footballers in the English Premier League (EPL) and his move to Turkish side Galatasaray is estimated to have earned him £1.5 million annually.
But today Eboue has been turned into a street adult, squatting among his peers in London.
Had Eboue, been taught financial literacy, today he would not be wailing, but instead he would be one of the largest investors, Africa and the world at large, would be looking up to.
Financial literacy deals with all aspects of finance, from the way money is generated to the time it is spent.
Players trading their football skills in Zambia are one of the highest paid in the Sub-Saharan Africa.
According to unverified figures, football players in the Zambian premier league earn between K10000 and K70000 monthly, among the top clubs.
However, even if these amounts looks too good, most of our players end up being paupers, with only a few having to invest their moneys.
Most of our players spend their monies on luxurious lifestyle, which do not benefit them at the end.
Our players should be taught ways on how they should manage their finances in a meaningful way unlike squandering it.
For this to be done, football clubs should take the onus upon themselves and help educate their players on financial matters because if they do not do it, the burden will later fall on them.
Individual players, who are reading this article, should also take it personally to start planning on how they will invest their fortunes.
And to the corporate world who are in the education business, you can collaborate with football clubs and help them improve the financial literacy of their players.
In fact, to the corporate world, it is another way in which you can make more money and help uplift the economy of this nation.
As a nation, we should reach a level where football will contribute significantly to the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP).