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Philippines to receive football aid

19 Feb 2014
Zurich, Switzerland: Luis Figo, Fabio Cannavaro and Patrick Vieira have accepted an invitation from Ronaldo and Zinedine Zidane and are committed to helping the Philippines in the FIFA-supported 11th annual Match Against Poverty that will take place on Tuesday, March 4 at the Stade de Suisse in Bern. Figo, the 2000 Ballon D’Or winner and 2001 FIFA World Player of the Year, is very keen to support the cause. “I am making an appeal to the public to come to the Stade de Suisse,” he said. “I would be delighted to see the stands full of people so we could celebrate football together in the fight against poverty. Let's help the Philippines."

Vieira, a 1998 World Cup-winner with France, added: “I am very excited about this game. Football speaks a universal language and we need to take advantage of this to appeal for the reconstruction of the Philippines.”

Former Italy captain Cannavaro commented:  “Unfortunately, natural disasters affect us every year. The fight against poverty must be constant and I'm very happy if I can contribute to it through football.”

Proceeds from the match will support recovery efforts in the Philippines in the wake of Typhoon Haiyan (known locally as Yolanda) - one of the most powerful storms on record that took the lives of some 6,000 people in the Visayas region on November 8, 2013.

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 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 Nedv?d (Czech Republic), Gianluca Zambrotta, Gennaro Gattuso, Christian Vieri and Fabio Cannavaro (Italy), Hakan Sukur (Turkey) Hidetoshi Nakata (Japan) and Freddie Ljungberg (Sweden).
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