The Airtel Uganda rising stars must be proud after meeting with Arsenal legend Lauren Etame Mayer over the weekend.

The former Cameroon and Arsenal right full back spent the weekend in Uganda alongside the club’s relations manager Luke Wilson on a planned visit courtesy of Airtel Uganda and Arsenal for the Airtel Uganda rising star project intended to help disadvantaged children have access to both quality education and football training.

Speaking to the future stars, Mayer advised them to keep focused, stay disciplined and listen to their coaches if they are cut the grade professionally in future.

“You must use this opportunity well”, he said. “In order to succeed, you must be disciplined, respect your team mates, coaches and work hard. Nevertheless, believe in your abilities”.

Lauren also feels it’s nice to start training kids while still 10 or 11 years as it’s the right age to teach these boys the basics of the game.

“Training kids while young (10 or 11 years) and teaching them the basics of football is important. It will help Uganda progress as a soccer nation and the future will tell”, he said pointing to Spain as an example.

“Spain kept on trying but then invested in academies and patiently waited”. “At the moment, they are World and European champions. I am not saying that Uganda is going win the World Cup but we need that time when an African country wins it”.

Lauren further said that he is confident one of the kids from the programme will one day make it as a professional.

“I hope to see one of you (rising stars) play professional football and am confident it will happen”.

On Ugandan football in general, Lauren admitted not knowing much about Uganda as a football country but believes football on the continent has been rising steadily insisting there are still no under dogs citing Zambia’s triumph at AFCON 2012 as a prime example.

Senior Staff writer at Kawowo Sports mainly covering football

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