UEFA's presentation of 100-cap awards continued apace this week with Ari Hjelm, Luís Figo and Goce Sedloski honoured.
After recent ceremonies in the Netherlands, Ukraine and Spain to recognise, among others, Edwin van der Saar, Andriy Shevchenko and Iker Casillas, Hjelm was the next centurion to be honoured with a commemorative cap and medal.
The former Finland forward, 49, is the first player from the Nordic nation to reach three figures in terms of international appearances, and told delegates at the annual Football Association of Finland (SPL-FBF) gala: "To win 100 caps requires you to have been fit and in good shape all of the time. I spent several years in the national team, 13 in all. Few of the squad nowadays enjoy as many."
Figo and Sedloski were given mementos before watching their respective national teams in action on Tuesday. A winner of a Portuguese record 127 caps, Figo had double cause for celebration as Paulo Bento's side booked their place at UEFA EURO 2012 with an emphatic 6-2 defeat of Bosnia and Herzegovina at the Estádio do Sport Lisboa e Benfica.
"I was fortunate and happy to receive an ovation on an unforgettable day for Portugal," the 39-year-old said. "We qualified with a big result in a stadium I don't visit often but where I made many appearances for my country."
Sedloski, meanwhile, started a new chapter in his career. He sat in the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia dugout for the first time in his role as assistant coach to John Toshack. Before the goalless draw with Albania in Prilep, Sedloski − who played 100 times at the heart of the FYROM defence − received his medal and cap from Football Federation of Macedonia (FFM) president Haralampie Hadzi-Risteski.
"Every match I played for Macedonia was a source of great pleasure for me," said Sedloski, 37. "I always represented my country with all of my heart and I'll continue to work the same way in my coaching career."
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