Clarence Seedorf, former Netherlands national team player and four-time UEFA Champions League winner, was today unveiled as the UEFA Global Ambassador for Diversity and Change. This announcement, made by UEFA President Michel Platini at the Olympic Stadium in Amsterdam, further underlines the organisation's commitment to promoting diversity in European football and combatting racism and discrimination in the game.
UEFA President Michel Platini said: "I am pleased with what UEFA's anti-discrimination campaigns and initiatives have achieved so far. We have introduced new regulations, resolutions and procedures for referees in order to tackle the problem. However, there is much more work to be done and I am delighted UEFA will now be counting on the contribution of Clarence Seedorf, a four-time UEFA Champions League winner and European football legend. He is passionate about the cause and will lend his experience and expertise to make sure our finger is on the pulse of the issue and that we can stamp all forms of discrimination out of football once and for all.
"I have always wanted a big personality as an ambassador for the fight against discrimination and racism, and Clarence also expressed his own ideas in this area. From this point, we'll try to bring Clarence with us at UEFA, in order for him to be the best possible ambassador against racism in Europe. I thank Clarence for joining the team of UEFA and to be the big leader in this important battle. UEFA will be at his service, to find solutions in terms of how we can fight racism in Europe."
UEFA Global Ambassador for Diversity and Change Clarence Seedorf said: "I am really honoured to be part of this whole project. After I spoke with the president, I felt his passion, and his ideas were very convincing. And of course I am going to commit fully, together with UEFA, to fight this fight. And I thank the president for the support that he is giving me and my beliefs to make this world a little bit better. The leadership that UEFA is showing, says a lot about where we want to go, and I am sure that together we can gather enough people to create a great and positive movement."
In his new role, Clarence Seedorf will work directly with UEFA's administration to combat discrimination and will participate in various UEFA corporate social responsibility campaigns aimed at promoting education, diversity and integration. Seedorf will be called upon to use his expertise and experience in order to create new concepts and initiatives that can be introduced at UEFA, both institutionally and in competitions.
"This is not a job: this is part of my personal life mission. I have been given a great opportunity to have UEFA as a partner. To make a difference within the football environment means to make a difference in the world. For me this is a fantastic tool to do much more, to give back to all the fans who are following this fantastic sport."
In his role as UEFA Global Ambassador for Diversity and Change, Seedorf will offer his thoughts and insight into UEFA's overall strategy to protect the image of football globally. Seedorf will become a key voice and role model in spreading the messages of tolerance and unity, with a view of eliminating discrimination and racism from football.
The ambassador launch event at the Olympic Stadium in Amsterdam was followed by a high-profile seminar organised by UEFA, the Royal Netherlands Football Association (KNVB) and Fare network, focusing on institutional discrimination in football.
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