ZURICH: New FIFA President Gianni Infantino’s first day in office was marked with rain, soaked boots and goal celebrations as some of football’s most enduring names travelled to Zurich to kick-off a new chapter in FIFA’s history by competing in a small seven-a-side football tournament at the home of FIFA.
“Football is back at FIFA, and FIFA is back in football,” said President Infantino, standing on the pitch in his football kit, addressing the crowd of drenched but undeterred spectators huddled under umbrellas. “As of today, I’d like that when we speak about FIFA, we speak about football. That’s why I arranged these games today,” the President said.
The day’s four competing teams, which comprised a wealth of talent from men’s and women’s football from all over the world, included names like Demetrio Albertini, Zvonimir Boban, Fabio Cannavaro, Stephane Chapuisat, Deco, Luis Figo, Fernando Hierro, Melanie Leupolz, Paolo Maldini, Geremi, Robert Pires, Clarence Seedorf, Andriy Shevchenko, Julia Simic, Kelly Smith, David Suazo and Gianluca Zambrotta.
All four teams played under the watchful eye of coach-for-the-day Fabio Capello. Amongst the various FIFA World Cup™ champions, FIFA Ballon d’Or winners and Women’s football stars in attendance were the lesser-known names of FIFA employees eager to test themselves against the best. The President himself, wearing a No. 9 jersey and captaining a team that included Figo and Julia Simic, was undeterred when taking on the defensive might of players like Gianluca Zambrotta, Michel Salgado and Maldini.
The full article will be published on FIFA.com shortly.
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Video news release with shot list
Audio file (mp3) for editorial use
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