Proceeds from the 2010 Match Against Poverty, backed by UEFA and taking place at Lisbon's Estádio da Luz on 25 January, will go towards the relief efforts in Haiti following the recent earthquake.
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Proceeds from the 2010 Match Against Poverty, backed by UEFA and taking place in Lisbon on 25 January, will support relief efforts in Haiti following the recent earthquake.
Estádio da Luz
The game, launched on the initiative of former French and Brazilian internationals Zinédine Zidane and Ronaldo, will be played at the Estádio da Luz in Lisbon, where a team picked by the duo will take on an SL Benfica All-Star side, kicking off at 19.45 local time. A considerable number of star names have confirmed their participation.
European football's governing body joins the world body FIFA in backing the annual United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) match, which serves to increase awareness of development goals and raise funds to assist initiatives against poverty. This year, in the wake of the earthquake in Haiti on 12 January, organisers and players decided that the funds should help efforts to aid the Haitian people.
Stars taking part
The following players are confirmed participants: Akwá (Angola), Kaká, Marcelo and Luciano da Silva (Brazil), Pavel Nedvěd (Czech Republic), Michael Laudrup (Denmark), Alfredo Esteves (East Timor), Graeme Le Saux (England), Zinédine Zidane, Fabien Barthez and Christophe Dugarry (France), Jean Sony and Joseph Peterson (Haiti), Baichung Bhutia (India), Edgar Davids and Phillip Cocu (Netherlands), Luís Figo, Fernando Couto and Pauleta (Portugal), Gheorghe Hagi and Gheorghe Popescu (Romania), Lucas Radebe (South Africa) and Fernando Hierro (Spain).
Example of solidarity
UEFA President Michel Platini has emphasised UEFA's support for the game. "One of UEFA's key aims is to channel the immense popularity of the game into positive social forces," he said. "This match is a concrete example of solidarity in action. I am proud to lend my full support and UEFA's name to the seventh edition of the Match Against Poverty. This event demonstrates how football can be used in the fight against social ills such as poverty, exclusion and illiteracy."
Making a difference
The UNDP is the United Nations' global network to help people meet their development needs and build a better life, and the Match Against Poverty provides an ideal platform to highlight the challenge of addressing global poverty. "I am sure all those attending the Lisbon match will have a most enjoyable and rewarding evening," said Michel Platini, "knowing their presence will contribute to solutions that can make a real difference in peoples' lives."
Tickets for the Match Against Poverty are available through the SL Benfica website. Click here to visit slbenfica.pt.