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REAL de BANJUL CLUB PROFILE

REAL de BANJUL CLUB PROFILE

 

COMPOSITION: The club is made up of the following:

·        A professional team participating in the first division of the Gambia Football Association

·        An academy team/youth team

·        A fan club

 

Mission statement:

·        To strive for success in competitions, particularly at professional level.

·        To provide opportunities for both students and non-students of all races and ages to play football at all levels.

·        To conduct the Club’s affairs with honesty, integrity and dignity.

·        To run a development programme that provides the highest quality of coaching at all levels so that players may be empowered to advance themselves through the sport.

·        To administer the Club along professional business lines so as to maximise profits which may then be fed back into further development and infrastructure building.

·        To support the education and career development of our playing, coaching and administrative staff.

 

CLUB HISTORY

Real de Banjul was founded in the 1966/67 season after a group of Secondary schoolboys international team returned from a trip to Thies in Senegal and named it as BENSON AND HEDGES FC.

 

The name was eventually changed by the then Director of Youth and Sports [then the Sports Officer] to REAL DE BATHURST FC and upon its registration with the Gambia Football Association, it headquartered at 81 Lancaster Street, Banjul.

The team witnessed another name change in 1970 changing it from REAL DE BATHURST to its present name of REAL DE BANJUL which led to the expansion of the team owning basketball (male and female), volleyball and athletics teams. The team then comprised of the youngest talented players in comparison to other local teams and won its first league title in 1971/72.

 

The success of the team is based upon the concept of:

·        Encouraging prolific young soccer talents

·        An interesting style of football (Sandango)

·        An unquestionable camaraderie amongst the players

 

Real of the ‘70’s was the real toast of Gambian football. The national team’s first choice at one time comprised of nine (9) Real de Banjul players with the inclusion of the legendary Alhaji Momodou Nije alias Biri Biri and Sega from Wallidan.

 

In the 1973/74 season, Real was host to the then Senegal Premier League and FA Cup champions Association Sportive et Culturelle Diaraf. Several international matches were played both at home and abroad, notably against ASC Jeanne d’Arc, Cassa Sport, US Sportive du Rail [all of Senegal, a selection in Nouakchott, Mauritania and Bendel Insurance FC of Nigeria. Also, friendly international matches were played against European teams like CKA of Russia, B1901 and B1909 from Denmark, Örebro SK from Sweden and several other teams. Real gained valuable experience and respect from all these encounters in terms of football.

 

The 1974 season would go down as the gloomiest year in the annals of Real de Banjul’s history. We were bereaved of short, agile and creative Joof Fye. Also in the same year, the club lost the services of ten of our best players eight of which left for further studies [Nyanga Sallah, Peggy Joof, Jeremiah Sock, Muntaga Gillen, Musa Njie, Gerneth Coker, Badou Foon and Sam Forster] while six left to join the Gambia Ports Authority FC including our inspiration captain Sam Sibi, Tapha Conteh, Kebba Ceesay and Gabba Touray. A year earlier, our able and energetic manager Mam Sait Njie (Hank) left the club for further studies abroad. By then also, most of our founder financiers and team officials had left the club for one reason or the other.

 

At the beginning of the 1974/75 season, most critics predicted the demise of the club but the latent potential of the team came forth in earnest. With the assistance of our remaining elders (notably Ebou Conteh, Kebba Conteh, S.B Jarra, M.O Njie, Sogie Sock and our ever sincere Momodou Gassama) coupled with the determination and sincere old hands (led by Saihou Sarr, Kebba Diaz, Ebou Joof, Jum Wadda, Patrick Njie and Pa Faal), new young talents been groomed were given the chance to prove themselves. These included the likes of Bye Malleh Wadda, Commy Owens, Ablie Jagne, Philip Sowe, Jim Mahoney, Faraba Maya, Bun Njie amongst others.

 

In 1974/75 season, Real won the league title with the new rejuvenated team and went on to be undefeated that year. The team was also finalist of the FA cup against GPA. The team became the first Gambian team to register in the African club championships. Our scheduled match against Hafia FC [the leading African team then] of the Guinée Championnat National didn’t materialize due to technical differences with the Football Association led to our participation being withdrawn.

 

Real as league champions for the second consecutive year participated in the African club championships but we were unfortunate to be eliminated by Djoliba Athletic Club of Mali through a 1-0 scoreline. The team’s concept of recruiting young talents mostly of school-going age, who either invariably proceeded abroad for further studies or are lured by other clubs, led to an ever-changing team and inconsistent performances in the 1975/76 season.

 

In 1977/78 season, Real as league champions (notably with veteran Kebba Diaz, Gabba Touray – back from Gambia Ports Authority, Ablie Jagne, Pa Mu Ndow, Bun, Njock Njie, late Dankeh Nyang and others) participated in the African club championship again, this time, against Saint Joseph Warriors FC of New Kru Town, Monrovia, Liberia and Ghana’s Hearts of Oaks.

 

The team unfortunately met its relegation to the second division of Gambian football in the 1978/79 season but it won the division that same year and gained promotion back to the first division with the assistance of its supporters (including unfancied but effective players like Arfang Ndow and Ousman Ndure),

 

Real was runner-up in the 1980 FA Cup final against Gambia Ports Authority. From 1980 up to 1984, when football matches were transferred to the Independence stadium, Real had been runners-up in several competitions and tournaments. Several young talents had also joined the team, notably, Saul Jagne, Lamin Sillah and Ebou Dubois. A year later, the club went on to become runners-up in the FA cup against Hawks.

 

In 1986, the club won the Saihou Ceesay Cup and the Guiness Cup against Young Africans and Gambia Ports Authority respectively.

 

Between the 1986 to 1993 period, the team underwent several changes as things weren’t going on fine coupled with the loll in the activities of Gambia Football Association and the public’s lassitude in league football which led to the team missing out in terms of winning trophies in comparison to our traditional sporting arch rivals Wallidan. This disparity was then redressed with that year’s FA Cup finals on Sunday the 27th of June 1993.

 

By 1993, Real won the first division league six times, six times FA cup winners, S.S Ceesay and Guinness Cup, once. The team later on went on to participate in the African club championship against a Guinea-Bissauan team. Real started the season ruggedly and the full potential and latent abilities of its players (most of whom were joining the team that season) was brought to the fore.

 

The services of sincere and reliable veterans like John Gomez [PaMu Ndow], Sulayman Jagne, Lamin Sillah and of course Ebou Dubois, complimented by the invualubale services of outspoken Bambo Fatty coupled with coach Alhagie Sillah and the rejuvenated team of dedicated and committed talents such as: versatile libero-cum-keeper, Wandeh N’Jie, rock solid Momodou Lamin Jones, master-dribbler Sulayman Bun Njie, Na Boy, Kebba Conteh, perfect and confident James Mbenga, reliable and tireless Sengan Ndure, strong Mohammed Boully Jammeh, dynamic Momodou Lamin Sey, tough Madoune Mboob [Oulaye], cunning Badou Samba, adoptable and reliable Ba Tambadou, creative Momodou Boy Fye, game-master Tijan Yullah, Simone Ndure, skilful Mustapha Bittaye, ball-master Jacob Nzally, lethal Pa Amadou Jallow, reliable Ebou Kolly, agile Ebou N’Jie, patient Bekai Mbenga, skilful Dodou Sarr, latent Baboucar Sey [Mbat], skilful Jumbo Jallow, creative Matarr Boye and veteran Mohammed Adams [Dinny Boy] and Amadou Ada. These were the Real players of the 90’s and beyond as they manifested that over our traditional sporting arch rivals Wallidan.

 

Real now boast of young, talented and skilful players in the likes of Buba Jallow alias Meles, Dimingo Manneh, Modou Njie Sarr, Baboucarr Savage and Baboucarr Trawally just to name but a few.

 

The team won the GFA First Division League for the first time in five years [2007] following an impressive 3-1 win over Young Africans in the final game of the season played at the KG5 Mini-Stadium in Banjul.

 

Real came into the game needing only a win and were at our best on the night, dominating play from start to finish and scoring three successive goals before the opponents pulled one back in the closing minutes of the game.

 

EXECUTIVE MEMBERS

 

PRESIDENT: WILLIAM ABRAHAM

 

1ST VICE PRESIDENT: PA YUSUFA SAMBA

 

2ND VICE PRESIDENT: BAKARY K. JAMMEH

 

SECRETARY GENERAL: ALHAGIE KOLLEY

 

ASST SECRETARY GENERAL: OUSMAN NJIE

 

SOCIAL SECRETARY: GIBI BAH

 

ASSISTANT SOCIAL SECRETARY: LAMIN TOURAY

 

EXECUTIVE MEMBERS: RIAD AZZI, EBRIMA BARRY, FRANCIS MBOGE

 

HONORARY LIFE PRESIDENTS: ALHAJI MOMODOU GASAMA, CHARBEL ELHAJJ, MAM SAIT NJIE