President Aleksander Čeferin will represent UEFA at a legends match between Croatia and Slovenia this weekend, with funds being raised for the Petrinja region following the earthquake that took place there in December.
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UEFA president Aleksander Čeferin will join stars from Croatia and Slovenia this weekend in a charity match in support of Croatia's city of Petrinja and its region, which was hit by a series of powerful earthquakes in December.
Following the earthquakes, President Čeferin and Croatian Football Federation (HNS) president, Davor Šuker discussed ways for the European football community to help the area around the cities of Petrinja and Sisak, 50 kilometers south-east of Zagreb, which is still recovering from the earthquakes which killed seven people, with many houses and buildings in the area destroyed or damaged.
They agreed to organise a charity match between Croatian and Slovenian football "legends", with UEFA also donating to the Croatia Red Cross to help the people affected by the devastating earthquake.
"Our thoughts are with the people of Croatia in these difficult times," said President Čeferin. "We hope that this help by their football family will help them overcome the challenges caused by this devastating earthquake and that this help will contribute the recovery of the Petrinja region.
The HNS will also donate to the County Football Association of Sisak-Moslavina County, for rebuilding the football infrastructure in the areas affected by the earthquake.
The Slovenian Football Association (NZS), represented by its president, Radenko Mijatović, will also make a donation to the fund.
Football to help bring smiles back
"We are once again witnessing great solidarity and friendship within the European football family," Davor Šuker said. "I believe that UEFA's help will reach the right addresses through the Red Cross, as well as that our help to the County federation will make easier the return of football in the county. I am convinced that football is one of the best ways to bring smiles back to people's, especially children's faces, so let this game be a sign of a return to normal life."
The friendly match between the legends of Croatia and Slovenia will be played on Saturday March 13, starting at 13:00 at the Stadium of NK Mladost in Petrinja.
Legends out in force
Both teams will have some big football names in their line-ups.
Croatia's squad for the match will feature: Davor Šuker, Zvonimir Boban, Aljoša Asanović, Ivica Olić, Petar Krpan, Dario Šimić, Marijan Mrmić, Stipe Pletikosa, Darijo Srna, Daniel Šarić, Niko Kranjčar, Igor Bišćan, Mario Stanić, Boris Živković, Silvio Marić, Mihael Mikić, Nenad Pralija, Tomislav Dujmović, Robert Špehar and Marko Babić.
The coach will be the senior advisor to the president of the HNS who was born in Petrinja, Zorislav Srebrić. Robert Prosinečki will be his first assistant and the others will be current Croatia coach Zlatko Dalić, former national team coach Miroslav Blažević.
As well as UEFA's President Čeferin and NZS's President Mijatović, Slovenia will also have some familiar names in their team, including Primož Gliha, Miran Pavlin, Milivoje Novaković, Milenko Ačimović, Boštjan Cesar and Mišo Brečko.