Gerbreselassie makes Czech history – http:

August 22nd, 2007 Print Print Email Email

Theo Gebreselassie made Czech history on Tuesday when he became the first black footballer to play for a national team, turning out for the under-21 team in their 1-0 defeat to Scotland. (more…)

Theo Gebreselassie made Czech history on Tuesday when he became the first black footballer to play for a national team, turning out for the under-21 team in their 1-0 defeat to Scotland.

A midfielder with second division Czech club Vysocina Jihlava, the 20-year-old Gebreselassie has an Ethiopian father and Czech mother.

“Someone has to be the first,” Gebreselassie said in an interview with Czech daily Dnes.

Born in the southeastern Czech town of Trebic, Gebreselassie came on as a 46th-minute replacement in the game in Falkirk.

“I’m very happy to be part of the squad and I hope to stay there as long as is possible,” he said, adding that he had encountered few problems with racism in Czech stadia.

“Certainly from time to time some fans shout some things but I don’t pay it any attention.”

Gebreselassie dismissed any relation to legendary long-distance runner Haile Gebreselassie.

“The surname is very common in Ethiopia, like Novak in the Czech Republic.”

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