Salam and hello all,
Kube, under the Islamic Foundation imprint, are releasing a book called The Victory Boys soon and we wanted to introduce you to one of its stars, Imam Munieb.
Imam Munieb is unique. He is responsible for starting the football team, Shabab Al-Nasr, otherwise known as The Victory Boys. A very brave decision, especially considering the extent of his knowledge of ‘the beautiful game’. We have an exclusive interview with the man himself below. I’m sure you will enjoy it!
Kube: What possessed you to start a football team?
Imam M: Yaa akhi, I hope your readers will not think it is a case of possession. Actually, I have a group of boys at the weekly madrasa – they are all about 10 to 14 years old. All they talk about is “football this”, “football that”. I began to think that maybe football was their life. But Islam should be their life, and I wanted them to see this. But you know, after a while, I started to think: maybe there is room for football in their life too. So I tried to marry the football to the deen, in a good, halal way.
K: Do you know much about football?
I: What would you like to know? It is a round, leather thing. Inside there is air. Also there are two goals and you have to kick the ball into these goals.
K: Can you explain the offside rule?
I: I have heard of this off-slide rule but no, I do not know how many points you will get for an off-slide.
K: How will you be able to manage a team knowing so little about the game?
I: I have made the good intention, and I pray for its success, Insha Allah. I hope that maybe I can find someone to help with the team and I have a young man in mind who I think will be perfect. Also, the boys are telling me we need a good coach, but I do not plan for any long journeys to games. We can play in the local park. Or catch a bus if we need to.
K: Has the introduction of football made a difference to any of the boys’ attentions in class?
I: I feel yes, Masha Allah, there is a big difference now. Before the boys didn’t want to learn about their deen. Now they see the team and the deen are things which bring them together.
K: Do you think the team are good enough to win anything?)
I: They think they are good enough! I think you will have to read the book to find out if they really are!
You can follow Imam Munieb on Twitter @ImamMunieb
The Victory Boys will be released at the start of June 2011.