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Timothy Weah is one of U.S. Soccer team’s brightest young prospects, scoring his first goal in a friendly match on Memorial Day against Bolivia in Chester, Pennsylvania. But Weah, 18, will have to work hard to escape the shadow of his world-famous father, George Weah, Liberia’s current president and one of the best soccer players ever to hail from Africa.

George Tawlon Manneh Oppong Ousman Weah was born October 1, 1966 and raised primarily in Liberia. He joined some of the elite youth soccer teams as a teenager ahead of joining Monaco, where he won the first of his three African Footballer of the Year awards in 1989. From Monaco, he signed with Paris Saint-German, the team where his son, Timothy plays on the club level now. It was with PSG that Weah became regarded as perhaps the best striker to play at the world level.

Weah was known for speaking out against racism in the sport, famously breaking a Portuguese player from the team FC Porto’s nose with a head butt after alleged racist taunts. Still, that year, Weah won the 1996 FIFA Fair Play Award.

To date Weah is the only African player to win the FIFA World Player of the Year award, and the “Ballon D’or,” both in 1995. From 1995 to 2000, Weah starred for AC Milan before ending his career at Al Jazira in 2003.

Shortly after his playing career was over, Weah began dipping his toe in Liberian politics, losing a 2005 presidential bid in part because of his lack of educational credentials. This motivated Weah to finish his studies at DeVry University in Miami, and he assumed office in January of this year despite a cloud of doubt over his ability to lead.

Weah and his Jamaican-born wife, Clar, raised their sons Timothy and George Jr., and daughter Tita, in the United States, although the children were reportedly born in Liberia. Timothy Weah resides in the U.S., while his brother, George, was a former pro player for Paris Saint-Germain.

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Little Known Black History Fact: George Weah was originally published on blackamericaweb.com

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