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Devotion to key human values ​​has united thousands of people around the world

04/25/2017. The events promoting peace, friendship, equality and a healthy lifestyle, dedicated to the Global Day of Football and Friendship have started today in Europe, Asia, Africa, North and South America. Tens of thousands of children and adults participate in friendly matches, open training sessions, flash mobs, marathons and sport events. Participants around the globe are supported by well-known football players, coaches, TV hosts and artists.

For the first time the Global Day of Football and Friendship was proclaimed in 2014 by the young ambassadors of the International Children’s Social FOOTBALL FOR FRIENDSHIP programme supported by FIFA and UEFA. During this day, everyone who shares the most important values, such as equality, respect for other cultures and peaceful existence bind a blue-green Friendship bracelet to his hand. The blue string of the bracelet symbolizes the peaceful sky, and the green string symbolizes the football field, accessible to everyone.

This year Friendship bracelet began to wear Hugo Tinelli, the leading TV producer in Argentina, Xu Li, the editor-in-chief of the news agency in China, Dimos Piros, three-time Olympic winner from Greece, Miodrag Bozhevich, the famous coach from Serbia, Kevin Bloom, FIFA referee from the Netherlands.

The events were attended by famous football players, including Serbian defender Branislav Ivanovich and Russian goalkeeper Yuri Lodygin from FC Zenit (St. Petersburg, Russia), Dutch striker Dirk Kuyt from FC Feyenoord (Rotterdam, the Netherlands). In Athens, the event was attended by the winner of the European Football Championship 2004 as part of the national team, Theodoras Zagarakis, who is a member of the European Parliament from Greece.

«It is important that this day comes at a time when people all over the world need to confirm their commitment to the principle of equality and respect for each other. FOOTBALL FOR FRIENDSHIP gives this opportunity and through the younger generation teaches people to commitment of peace and friendship regardless of gender, age and physical abilities. It feels great to be appointed as a national FOOTBALL FOR FRIENDSHIP 2017 operator in Pakistan and I hope that in future we can also bring this platform to our country and invite children from across the world to Pakistan», - shared emotions Fahad Khan, Pakistan Football Federation

Background

The FOOTBALL FOR FRIENDSHIP (F4F) international children's social programme is implemented by Gazprom since 2013. The programme unites children of different nationalities, different sexes, different physical abilities. Friendship, peace and equality are the key values ​​promoted by participants of the FOOTBALL FOR FRIENDSHIP. The goal of the programme is the development of children's football, fostering tolerance and respect for different cultures and nationalities among children from different countries. The key values ​​that the participants support and promote are friendship, equality, justice, health, peace, loyalty, victory, tradition and honor.

The Global Day of Football and Friendship is celebrated in more than 60 countries around the world, including Russia, the United States, Brazil, India, China, Germany, France, Algeria, Syria, Iraq, Japan and other countries. Over 400 thousand people were involved in the festive events. In different years the Global Day of Football and Friendship Day was supported by hundreds of players including the legend of world football Franz Beckenbauer (Germany), one of the best striker in the history of the African continent Didier Drogba (Côte d'Ivoire), the famous defender of Real Madrid Michel Solgado (Spain), ex-player of London Arsenal Andrey Arshavin (Russia), former captain of the national team Vitor Bahia (Portugal) and other stars from the world of football.

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