Former Cameroon footballer Mboma converts to Islam, changes name

Former Cameroon forward Patrick Mboma was also part of the team that won gold at the 2000 Sydney Olympics.

Photo credit: File | AFP

What you need to know:

  • During his career, Mboma played for Chateauroux, Paris Saint-Germain, Metz, Gamba Osaka, Cagliari, Parma, Sunderland, Al-Ittihad, Tokyo Verdy and Vissel Kobe before retiring in 2005.
  • Mboma, who is a football consultant for French television, Canal+, is the latest football star to convert to Islam.

Former Cameroon striker Patrick Mboma has converted to Islam and changed his name to Abdul Jalil Mboma.

The two-time Africa Cup of Nations winner proclaimed his faith before a crowd of worshipers in a mosque in his native Douala on Friday, May 13.

The 51-year-old did not reveal his motivation for the switch from Christianity to Islam, but reports say the conversion is linked to his recent union with his sweetheart, Fatoumata Binta, a Guinean Muslim.

Affectionately called Patrick “Magic” Mboma, the 2000 African Player of the Year did not make any public comments about his conversion after his proclamation on Friday, but posted a photo of him and his wife dressed in Islamic regalia on his Instagram page on Saturday.

Mboma is a household name in football on the continent. He led the Indomitable Lions of Cameroon to back-to-back Africa Cup of Nations titles in 2000 co-hosted by Ghana and Nigeria, and 2002 in Mali.

He also helped Cameroon win their first-ever Olympic gold medal at the Sydney Games in 2000.

Mboma also played at the 1998 and 2002 World Cups, scoring a memorable overhead kick against France in 1998 which earned him the nickname name “Magic” Mboma.

During his career, Mboma played for Chateauroux, Paris Saint-Germain, Metz, Gamba Osaka, Cagliari, Parma, Sunderland, Al-Ittihad, Tokyo Verdy and Vissel Kobe before retiring in 2005.

Mboma, who is a football consultant for French television, Canal+, is the latest football star to convert to Islam.

In March, Ghanaian and Arsenal midfielder, Thomas Partey converted to Islam proclaiming his confirmation at a mosque in London.

Before Partey, former Dutch international Clarence Seedorf also embraced islam. The former Indomitable Lions coach switched to Islam during a ritual in Qatar in March where he has been living for some years.

He wrote on his Instagram page that he was “very happy and pleased to join all [Muslim] Brothers and Sisters around the world,” and expressed his gratitude to his wife, Sophia Makramati for teaching him “in depth the meaning of Islam”.

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