UEFA today launched a new award to commemorate players from UEFA's 53 member associations who have made 100 or more appearances for their national team. The proposal was approved by the UEFA Executive Committee at its last meeting in Nyon in June.
The award will consist of a commemorative cap and medal to be given to the players who have reached this milestone. The first official presentations will take place in September and October in conjunction with either the respective national team's home fixture in UEFA EURO 2012 qualifying or the occasion of a friendly match. As a rule, the award will be made by the president of the national FA concerned.
Michel Platini welcomed the introduction of the new award. "I think it is a fantastic idea," the UEFA President said today. "Any player who has played 100 or more times for his or her country definitely deserves recognition by the football fraternity. Presenting the player with a cap and medal at forthcoming national team matches will highlight their achievement, while helping to refocus public attention on the importance of national team football."
The first awards to be presented at the next round of internationals include those for Andreas Herzog (Austria–Turkey), Dario Šimić (Croatia-Israel), Jari Litmanen, Sami Hyypiä, Jonatan Johansson and Ari Hjelm (Finland-Netherlands), József Bozsik (Hungary-Sweden), Pat Jennings (Northern Ireland-Serbia) and Dorinel Munteanu, Gheorghe Hagi, Gheorghe Popescu and Ladislau Bölöni (Romania-France).
Currently 109 European players have represented their country 100 or more times at international level. The full list of names can be found on UEFA.com.
With a number of players close to achieving the 100-cap mark, further presentations will follow at future national team games across Europe.
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