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Last Updated: Monday, 3 May, 2004, 09:43 GMT 10:43 UK
Gaddafi makes debut
Libya and Perugia's Al-Saadi Gaddafi
Libya's Al-Saadi Gaddafi has made his debut for Perugia
Al-Saadi Gaddafi came on as a substitute for Perugia in their 1-0 win over Juventus to finally make his debut in the Italian Serie A on Sunday.

The son of the Libyan leader Colonel Muammar Gaddafi joined the club before the start of the season but has had to battle fitness problems and then was banned after testing positive in a drugs test.

The Libyan tested positive for a banned substance in October and was handed a three-month ban by Italian soccer authorities.

Gaddafi's appearance was a surprise given that Perugia desperately needed to win Sunday's game against Juve to keep alive their hopes of avoiding relegation.

Perugia coach Serse Cosmi defended his decision, saying Gaddafi deserved to finally get a chance.

"Gaddafi came on because he is a player and not because any one of us wanted to go into history as the one who first played the son of a head of state in the Italian championship," Cosmi said.

Gaddafi was previously a member of the board at Juventus and has been open about his support for the Turin club, even arranging for their Italian Super Cup match with Parma to be played in the Libyan capital Tripoli last season.

"I spoke with Saadi during the week and he let me know that his dream was to play against Juventus," he said.

"I didn't make any promise but having seen how the game was going, I decided to give him an appearance."

Prior to Sunday's game, Gaddafi had made two appearances on the bench without actually playing.


SEE ALSO
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08 Feb 04  |  African
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Kallon and Gaddafi banned
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