Football greats line up for Match For Solidarity

A host of footballing greats have confirmed their participation in the Match for Solidarity organised by UEFA and the United Nations in Geneva.


013 - Ronaldinho and Figo to captain all-star teams to raise money for charity in joint UEFA-UN initiative

A host of footballing greats, including two top coaches and numerous legendary players, have confirmed their participation in the Match for Solidarity, a joint UEFA-United Nations charity game which will take place on Saturday 21 April (kick-off 16.00CET) at the Stade de Genève in Geneva, Switzerland.

The line-ups of the two teams comprise stellar names from the world of football, including numerous former UEFA EURO, UEFA Champions League and FIFA World Cup winners.

The list of players who have confirmed their participation in the Figo & Friends team, coached by Didier Deschamps, is an impressive one: Luis Figo (captain), Dida, Vítor Baía, Míchel Salgado, Frank de Boer, Rio Ferdinand, Cristian Chivu, Dejan Stanković, Robert Pirès, Jari Litmanen, Christian Karembeu, Andrea Pirlo, Raúl, Robbie Keane, Kelly Smith and Nuno Gomes.

The glittering list of legendary players, who will be coached by Carlo Ancelotti and will join the Ronaldinho & Friends team, includes: Ronaldinho (captain), David James, Antonis Nikopolidis, Juliano Belletti, Cafu, Edmílson, Casey Stoney, Éric Abidal, Michael Essien, Youri Djorkaeff, Gaizka Mendieta, Ronald de Boer, Henrik Larsson, Alexander Frei, Patrick Kluivert and Célia Šašić. The renowned former Italian referee Pierluigi Collina will officiate the match.

The match is aimed at promoting peace, human rights and well-being in the world, through the Sustainable Development Goals as set out by the United Nations. The proceeds from this event, as well as from the charity dinner and a unique digital football auction, will go to the UEFA Foundation for Children. The funds will be used to finance humanitarian and development projects to help children with disabilities both at a local and global level.

This year’s local beneficiary will be Autisme Genève, a non-profit organisation founded in Geneva in 2007 under the initiative of parents whose children live with autism spectrum disorders. At an international level, the funds will be used to support projects in Africa, Asia and South America. The projects will be selected by a committee of representatives from UEFA, the United Nations Office in Geneva and the Fondation du Stade de Genève.

The match at the Stade de Genève, which will be distributed to a global audience via the European Broadcast Union, will kick off at 16.00CET. Tickets, priced from CHF 10 up to CHF 22, are available at More details on the digital football auction, which includes some of the finest memorabilia from the world’s leading players, can be found here.

To celebrate diversity and multiculturalism as a tool for youth development and as a vehicle for peace, pre-match activities involving local and international children will be organized about one hour before kick-off. The UEFA Foundation for Children has invited the 'Eleven Campaign', a non-profit organisation, to organise a children’s football match (kick-off at 14.45CET) and complete a documentary which has been two years in the making. The game, will feature 11 youngsters from 11 different countries, who will meet for the first time and will play against a team of children from the Geneva area.