Former Premier League footballer undertakes mammoth challenge

Former Southampton full-back, Francis Benali, will cover 100 miles a day.
Former Southampton full-back, Francis Benali, will cover 100 miles a day.

A former Premier League footballer will visit Turf Moor football ground on Friday, October 7th as part of a mammoth fundraising challenge for Cancer Research UK.

The former Southampton full-back, Francis Benali, 47, is running and cycling to all 44 Premier League and Championship grounds in just two weeks in a bid to raise £1million for the charity, covering at least 100 miles a day - running one marathon and cycling the remaining distance every day.

‘Benali’s Big Race’ challenge starts at Bournemouth’s Vitality Stadium on Sunday, October 2nd and will finish at St Mary’s Stadium in Southampton where he spent more than 20 years of his career on Sunday October 16th.

Francis is calling on people in Lancashire to support his latest challenge and help raise vital funds to beat cancer sooner, saying: “Last year, my father-in-law Bill was diagnosed with prostate cancer so I’m even more determined to raise as much money as possible to help conquer this devastating disease.

Now on his second fundraising event, Francis said: "Hopefully people in Burnley and across the UK will be just as generous this time around. Every pound donated will support Cancer Research UK’s pioneering work in immunotherapy, helping to bring forward the day when all cancers are cured.”

Alison Barbuti, Cancer Research UK’s spokesperson for the North West, said: “We are absolutely delighted that Francis is taking on yet another awe-inspiring fundraising challenge to raise much-needed funds for Cancer Research UK.

“Every action, no matter how big or small, makes a real difference in the fight against the disease."