Before Sixers’ superstar 7-foot-2 center Joel Embiid learned how to play basketball — relatively late in life as a teenager in Cameroon — he was a big soccer fan, literally and figuratively.
Though his career is in basketball and not in his first love of soccer, he still is not shy about his interest in the sport, and is currently in London planning to attend a friendly, celebrity socccer match prior to the Champions League final on a floating pitch in on Cardiff Bay Friday. The game will see many ex soccer superstars hit the field again prior to UEFA crowning either Real Madrid and Juventus a champion on Saturday.
Embiid’s name is on the roster, but will he play?
According to CSNPhilly, the Sixers say he is simply attending. Which comes as good news for worried Sixers’ fans who saw the big man shut down after just 31 NBA games his rookie season. He seems to be in good spirits after recovering from another knee surgery, having played a pick up game with children in Philly earlier this week. He was also the Philadelphia representitive at the NBA Draft Lottery a few weeks ago.
Embiid joins Juan Hernangomez and Clint Capella as other NBA players on the roster for the exibition match. Carmelo Anthony is also expected to be in attendence for both matches in Wales this weekend.
The full rosters are listed below for the Friday match:
Vítor Baia (GK), Cafu, Ciro Ferrara, Steffen Freund, Patrik Andersson, Dejan Stankovic, Youri Djorkaeff, Robert Pires, Marcel Desailly, Ian Rush, Ryan Giggs, Fabrizio Ravanelli, David Trezeguet, Gianluca Zambrotta, Eric Abidal, Marco Materazzi, Jeremy Lynch (freestyler), Clint Capela, Joel Embiid
David James (GK), Michel Salgado, Celestine Babayaro, Roberto Carlos, Gaizka Mendieta, Luis Figo, Predrag Mijatovic, Patrizia Panico, Davor Suker, Luis Garcia, Rai, Clarence Seedorf, Christian Karembeu, Steve McManaman, Deco, Eidur Gudjohnsen, Adidas Young Champions: Carmelo Anthony, Billy Wingrove (F2 freestyler), Juan Hernangomez