Manchester United legend Ryan Giggs, former Spain international Michel Salgado and rising Portuguese star Joao Felix have joined some of football’s biggest names in supporting Dubai Sports Council’s “Be Fit, Be Safe” campaign, urging Emiratis and UAE’s expatriates to heed the country’s authorities and stay home, and stay healthy
DUBAI (Pakistan Point News - 9th Apr, 2020) Manchester United legend Ryan Giggs, former Spain international Michel Salgado and rising Portuguese star Joao Felix have joined some of football’s biggest names in supporting Dubai Sports Council’s “Be Fit, Be Safe” campaign, urging Emiratis and UAE’s expatriates to heed the country’s authorities and stay home, and stay healthy.
Last week, former football greats Luis Figo of Portugal, Brazil’s Roberto Carlos and Frenchman Nicolas Anelka were among the first to back the campaign, releasing a video message for their fans in Dubai and UAE.
Italian Pierluigi Collina, one of the best known football referees, and former France internationals Eric Abidal and Mikael Silvestre have also backed the campaign since and now Giggs and Felix have lent their voice to the campaign, along with former Spain and Real Madrid defender Salgado, through a video message to their friends and fans in the UAE.
“Hello to all my friends in Dubai and the UAE,” said Giggs, who is now manager of the Wales national team, having brought his playing career to an end in 2014, a few months past his 40th birthday, after 24 years at Manchester United.
“Now I know it is a difficult time, but try and find, during the day, some time to exercise. We need to stay fit. Also make sure you stay home and stay safe. I’ll see you soon.”
Felix, who plays for Atletico Madrid in Spain and received the Best Revelation Player award from His Highness Sheikh Mansoor Bin Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the Chairman of Dubai Sports Council, at December’s Dubai Globe Soccer Awards, added: “Hello to all my friends in Dubai and UAE. Take care and stay home, and don’t forget to train at home. Let’s all say, ‘Be Fit, Be Safe’. Yours, Joao Felix.”
Salgado, who is a long-time Dubai resident and has been a strong supporter of DSC’s efforts to promote grassroots football in the UAE, said the best way to fight COVID 19 was to stay safe and stay healthy.
“Hi, this is Michel Salgado and this is a message for all the people in Dubai and UAE,” he said. “We are living in a very difficult moment. We are fighting a battle that we were not ready for. And in order to do so, we need to be stronger than ever. We need to be a team. We need to stick together. We need to follow all the rules of the authorities, and mentally and physically, we need to be ready for it. So be fit and be safe.”
Figo, the 2001 FIFA World Player of the Year and one of the greatest players of his generation, had earlier sent a video message to all his “friends in Dubai and the UAE”, saying, “this is a really difficult moment and we need to take care of us and others as well. So stay at home and try to be fit while you are at home. Let us all say, ‘Be Fit and Be Safe’. Take care.”
The “Be Fit, Be Safe” campaign has been launched by Dubai Sports Council to encourage members of the community to continue exercising at home following the precautionary closure of gyms to combat the spread of the Coronavirus pandemic.
Through the campaign, which is being run under the hashtag #DSCchallenge, Dubai Sports Council is urging members of the community to be safe and avoid going out unless absolutely necessary, but, at the same time, continue exercising at home and share their home workout videos online, tagging @DubaiSC. The Council also requested those sharing their videos to nominate two friends to take up the challenge.
The “Be Fit, Be Safe” initiative has received widespread support from the community, with experts from the fitness industry and some of UAE’s top sports stars, taking part alongside many others, including mums and dads, and schoolkids, of different nationalities. As part of the campaign, DSC has also linked up with some of the leading brands from UAE’s fitness industry to offer free daily virtual fitness classes, led by certified fitness trainers.