2. Bruce Grobbelaar- 50 years playing
The Former Zimbabwe international Bruce Grobbelaar happens to be a hero most football fans in Africa don’t really know a lot about. Born in South Africa in 1957 but raised in President Robert Mugabe country, the talented shot-stopper played for Premier League giants Liverpool for 13 years. He retired in 2007 aged 50 years. He is 58 years today.
For those who consider Germany No. 1 keeper Manuel Neuer to be the best sweeper in the history of the game, I might challenge you to have a look at Grobbelaar video clips because am sure you will change your opinion. He had it all, talk of confidence, flamboyance and gymnastic-like athletic ability, he is by far the best keeper Africa has ever produced.
It’s not all about his personal abilities; he won the League 6 times, FA Cup 3 times, League Cup 3 times, FA Charity Shield 5 times, European Cup and Super Cup once. Samuel Etoo may be the most decorated African Player of all time but looking at Grobbelaar medal cabinet, you can say they are up there together.
Grobbelaar collected 33 Caps for Zimbabwe national team between 1977-1998. He also served as a player-coach for the national team on two occasions. He is currently the goalkeeper coach for Ottawa Fury FC of the North American Soccer League.
1. Colin Lee- 70 years playing (Britain)
He is arguably the oldest player in British history if not football history. In 2011 he was awarded the Barclays Community Sports Award for his community football work. The goalie, now 77 years old has been playing since he was 6 years and that means he has played for 70 years.
Speaking to the media after the receiving the award, Mr. Lee said ‘I’ve been told you have to be mad to be a goalie, so I guess I must be bordering on that as I’ve done it for so long.
‘I like chucking myself around like a lunatic. I’ve had lots of bruises but amazingly I’ve never had any serious football injuries in nearly 70 years.’
Today he plays every weekend for at least 20 minutes but he admits age is now catching up with him.
‘I still feel like a six-year-old boy at heart when I play, although my body tells me differently,’ he says.
‘I want to continue playing football for as long as I can.’