International line-up of football greats set to play for the Philippines tomorrow

Mar 3, 2014

UNDP Goodwill Ambassadors and football legends Ronaldo and Zinédine Zidane will rally their team of internationally renowned football players for a friendly match to aid recovery efforts in the Philippines. (Photo: UNDP)

Manila – 03 March 2014:
A star-studded line-up of football greats is confirmed for tomorrow’s Match Against Poverty in Bern, Switzerland – proceeds of which will help support urgent recovery efforts for the millions still struggling to rebuild their lives after Typhoon Haiyan (Yolanda). 

Among those set to take to the field is the 2000 Ballon D’or and 2001 FIFA World Player winner Luís Figo. “I would be delighted to see the stands full of people so we could celebrate soccer together in the fight against poverty. Let's help the Philippines,” he said in the lead-up to the game.

For the 11th year running, UNDP Goodwill Ambassadors and football legends Zinédine Zidane and Ronaldo will lead led their team of internationally renowned football players, including players like Luís Figo, for a friendly match against the Bern professional football club, the BSC Young Boys and Friends.

At half-time a short version of a new film, which shares the stories of young footballs from Tacloban, by renowned Swiss filmmaker, Michael Steiner will be showcased. The full film (7-minutes) is set to be launched here in Manila on Thursday (March 6).

“People here are determined to fight their way back after this disaster,” said United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Country Director, Maurice Dewulf. “But, they can’t do it alone. Through the film, we want to shine a spotlight on the urgent need for recovery support,” he said.

This year, two-thirds of the funds raised from ticket sales and television rights from the Match Against Poverty will help communities affected by Haiyan (Yolanda) to restore their livelihoods and promote development.

Typhoon Haiyan (Yolanda) devastated one of the poorest parts of the Philippines last November, affecting millions, leaving them homeless or without incomes. Over half (51%) of fisher folk and 29% of farming households reported that their livelihoods were completely destroyed.

The list of players confirmed up to now in the Ronaldo, Zidane, Friends team is: Ronald de Boer (Netherlands), Steve McManaman and Jamie Carragher (England), Robert Pires, Claude Makéléle, Christian Karembeu, Youri Djorkaeff and Patrick Vieira (France), Jens Lehmann (Germany), Gaizka Mendieta , Fernando Hierro and Michel Salgado (Spain), Paulo Ferreira, Fernando Couto, Luis Figo, Paulo Sousa and Deco (Portugal), Marta, Giovane Elber, Juliano Belletti and Roberto Carlos (Brasil), Pavel Nedvěd (Czech Republic), Gianluca Zambrotta, Gennaro Gattuso, Christian Vieri and Fabio Cannavaro (Italy),  Hakan Sukur (Turkey) Hidetoshi Nakata (Japan) and Freddie Ljungberg (Sweden).

The annual match against poverty - which is televised globally - is supported by both football’s governing body, the Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA), and the Union of European Football Associations (UEFA).

Contact information

In Manila: Lisa Hiller-Garvey, Mobile +63 (0) 9175147983,; or Anna Mae Lamentillo ; +63 (0) 9175068700,

Aziyadé Poltier-Mutal; Mobile: + 41 79 3491610 -Tel: + 41 22 9178368

Stade de Suisse, Albert Staudenmann ; Mobile : +41 79 3018511 - Tel : +41 31 3448007, 

Online: | @undp | #PovertyMatch


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