Ruud Gullit has today been named as the President of The HollandBelgium Bid, the joint candidature of Belgium and the Netherlands for the World Cup in 2018/2022. Rivalling England's bid for a Northern hemisphere nation to hold the World Cup, the first since Germany 2006!
The board of The HollandBelgium Bid decided unanimously to appoint Gullit to the most important position within the organisation, citing his vast football knowledge and enormous international appeal as a potential ‘trump card’ for The HollandBelgium Bid.
The appointment means that The HollandBelgium Bid will have one of the most famous footballers from the history of the game in Belgium and the Netherlands to strengthen its candidacy and help promote it to the world. Gullit, who is already heavily engaged in all aspects of the international campaign and the strategy of the candidacy, will take an active role in leading Bid delegations.
In addition to the appointment of Gullit, The HollandBelgium Bid has
also today announced a number of other well known names as ambassadors.
They include: European Player of the Century Johan Cruyff, soccer icons
Marco van Basten, Clarence Seedorf, Eric Gerets, Dennis Bergkamp,
Michel Preud'homme and Edwin van der Sar, who have all declared their
“With his reputation and enormous international appeal, Ruud
Gullit’s appointment is of great significance for our candidacy,"
explained Harry Been, CEO of The HollandBelgium Bid. “Ruud has a
tremendous football background and knowledge that we believe can be a great advantage for
the Bid. During the official presentation of the candidacy to the
world’s press in Cape Town in December last year, Ruud proved himself a
great ambassador. He believes in our chances and is fully behind our
Bid message of ‘Together for Great Goals’, which shows how a World Cup
in our countries can be of value to the rest of the world."
The current list of international footballers supporting the candidacy includes: Marco van Basten, Dennis Bergkamp, Regi Blinker, Gilles de Bilde, Frank de Boer, Hans van Breukelen, Jan Ceulemans, Phillip Cocu, Johan Cruyff, Eric Gerets, Georges Grün, Paul van Himst, Pierre van Hooijdonk, Rene van de Kerkhof, Willy van de Kerkhof, Patrick Kluivert, Erwin Koeman, Ronald Koeman, Ruud Krol, Wilfried Van Moer, Johan Neeskens, Luc Nilis, Ruud van Nistelrooy, Arthur Numan, Marc Overmars, Jean Marie Pfaff, Michel Preud’homme, Michael Reiziger, Edwin van der Sar, Enzo Scifo, Clarence Seedorf, Jaap Stam, Orlando Trustfull, Gert Verheyen, Marc Wilmots, Aron Winter, Rob Witschge, Richard Witschge and Ben Wijnstekers.
Also today, Achmed Hassan, captain of the Egyptian national team, was unveiled as an ambassador of The HollandBelgium Bid. Achmed Hassan played for three years for RSC Anderlecht in Belgium and sees the joint candidacy of Belgium and the Netherlands as a strong demonstration of the role that both countries play in world football. Achmed Hassan has won three consecutive African Cup of Nations titles and has won 172 caps for his national team.