Footballer of the year, Teko "Ace" Modise of Orlando Pirates, has been appointed a McDonald's 2010 Player Escorts Programme ambassador by the South African branch of this popular American eatery.
The announcement was made in Johannesburg yesterday. It comes less than a week after Modise pocketed R250000 after being named the 2007-08 Absa Premiership Player of the Year.
The move by the restaurant chain could turn Modise into an instant multimillionaire.
Though they would not let the cat out of the bag regarding the financial implications, Sowetan has it on good authority that Modise could earn about R2 million a year for his role.
"It is a great moment for me today to be appointed as the player escort programme ambassador. It never came in my mind that one day I would be given a task to lead the programme," said an excited Modise yesterday.
The Bafana Bafana midfielder's role will be to spread the company's message about the wellbeing of children.
He is expected to encourage youth at the grassroots level to be physically fit and be passionate about sport.
South African Football Players' Union president Hareiapha Marumo congratulated Modise on his appointment.
"We are grateful to the restaurant company for acknowledging a player as an ambassador,'' said Marumo.
The programme will give kids aged between six and 10 years a chance to walk onto the football pitch hand-in-hand with some of the most renowned players in the world at every match.
As part of the children's commitment, the restaurant will be taking Bothlale Mokone, 11, from Midrand, and Tarren Pedro, 12, from Cape Town to the 2008 Beijing Olympics.
McDonald managing director Darren Hall said they appointed Modise because the star shared the company's commitment to the wellbeing of children and a passion for giving back to the community.