Danone Nations Cup World Final Press Release
Monday 16 September 2013By ESFA Office
Team England celebrate one of their many goals
25.000 people packed the stands at Wembley Stadium to support the world’s biggest international football tournament for 10-12 year olds.
Over 400 children from around the world descended into Wembley Stadium to celebrate the world’s largest international football tournament for 10-12 year olds at the Danone Nations Cup World Final. The event saw the world’s most promising U12 football teams compete at the iconic stadium.
International legend and Danone Nations Cup Ambassador, Zinédine Zidane, cheered the teams throughout the afternoon and took part in football chants and a giant Mexican wave alongside national tournament Ambassadors John Scales (UK), Tom Ince (UK) and Gheorghe Hagi (Romania). During the tense final between France and Brazil, it was 0-0 at the final whistle which took the game into penalties. Team France, were crowned the international winners as they beat Brazil on penalties (3:1), and were presented with their winning trophy by Zidane at the official tournament prize ceremony.
Amongst the 32 national teams, Team England showcased their footballing talents in front of lively home crowd and beat Russia an impressive 3-0 to clinch 9th place. Ireland showcased a high caliber of talent during the knock-out stages and played Japan in the semi-final and scooped 4th place. Over the afternoon everyone had the chance to play on the pitch and experience the electric Wembley atmosphere in front of footballing legends.
The event, which was hosted by British Olympic sprinter Iwan Thomas and TV presenter Abi Griffiths and included a special performance from Britain’s Got Talent winners Diversity, football freestyler demonstrations and a giant zorbing competition which took place on the pitch.
Awards were presented to the ‘Best Player’ of the tournament, Hiro Satho from Japan, the ‘Fair Play’ award went to the country of Japan for their presentation of the fair play oath, 3rd place went to Japan, 2nd to Brazil and the winners were France.
Zinédine Zidane, Danone Nations Cup Ambassador, said: “A massive congratulations to France for winning this year’s Danone Nations Cup World Final. The teams all showed tremendous skill and professionalism on the pitch and I’m very proud to be a part of a fantastic program to help children develop their love for football and grow with respect for themselves and others around them. I wish everyone the best of luck in the future.”
Ian Forgie, Team England Coach, said: “The atmosphere here today has been incredible. Our team are so grateful for everyone who came down to watch and support us and all the international teams here today. It is an experience the kids will never forget and we are delighted to have been part of this and send our thanks to Danone.”
Over the Danone Nations Cup’s fourteen-year history, the tournament has established itself as a highly respected event and gained official FIFA endorsement. By bringing this competition to the UK on the anniversary of the 2012 Games, Danone showed real commitment to helping deliver a sustainable activity, health and sports legacy. From this, the 2013 World Final was officially recognized by the 'Inspired By 2012' campaign.
Nicolas Riom, Managing Director for Danone UK & Ireland, said: “For Danone, it is more than just a competition. It is a way of putting into practice the company's mission, to bring health through food to as many people as possible, by teaching children about the positive values of sport and the importance of a proper diet and exercise. This year, we are fully supporting the award-winning healthy eating education program for primary schools, ‘Eat Like a Champ’, which we have created in collaboration with the British Nutrition Foundation and in support of the Change 4 Life campaign.”
Surrey Sports Park in Guildford played host to the 32 national teams whom stayed on site, took part in various training and nutritional learning games and activities. The Danone Nations Cup World Final event is designed to symbolize a professional football camp so the children involved experience playing abroad, competing in a competitive environment, and living and learning together.
The week-long event kicked-off with an official opening ceremony where the children performed national dances alongside signing the oath to the ‘Fair Play’ rule. Openness, respect and fair play are the core principles on which the event is built upon. Everyone involved in the competition - children, coaches and accompanying adults – undertakes a promise to respect these values by signing an ethical charter at the opening ceremony.
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- 16th :: Danone Nations Cup World Final Press Release