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> Gianni Rivera has received the UEFA President's Award for 2011

 
Jack Bauer
post Mar 13 2012, 12:33 AM
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Milan great receive award from Michel Platini at a special UEFA ceremony in Milan

MILAN - One of Italian football’s greatest names, Gianni Rivera, has received the UEFA President’s Award for 2011 at a special ceremony held today, Monday 12 March in Milan where Rossoneri chief executive Adriano Galliani was also present.

Rivera, whose playmaking brilliance thrilled the crowds and brought success to AC Milan and Italy during a superb career in the 1960s and early 1970s, was presented with the award by UEFA President Michel Platini during a ceremony at the Stadio Giuseppe Meazza.

Here are some sound-bites from the ceremony:

ADRIANO GALLIANI
"Rivera is the fifth person to receive this award and he has been preceded by players who have made ​​the history in the world of football. This is the club that has won more trophies in the world, 18 international titles, we should be proud."

MICHEL PLATINI
"Thank you all for being here. In 2007 I thought that the the President's award should be handed out to the great champions of European football. Gianni Rivera has racked up many nicknames in an age when football was not discussed as it is today. Worldwide we remember the incredible extra-time at the Azteca in 1970, he was perhaps the first modern era midfield player. Gianni was one who understood and reasoned strategy, a player's brain who knew that the ball traveled faster than man. he found his team-mates, even if he did not look up, I'll get the ball where you need it. When he won the Golden Ball in 1969, it was the title of France Football: pure class. But it was also the results: he has been successful all with the international club and national teams, competing in the Olympics and four World Championships in Rome in 1960. Everyone remembers the matches and his lightness of touch."

GIANNI RIVERA
"I'm speechless, I thank all the presidents I have had at club and international level, and especially all my former team-mates. Many are here – I wish they could all be. I thank Michel Platini for this award, especially for the noble reasons behind it. I think everybody would understand if one day he gives this award to himself. I thank Milan because it's really a special club and I hope that one day another Italian player will receive this award. I think the only way to do it is to work for quality more than quantity."

RIVERA'S CAREER
Rivera joined Milan from US Alessandria Calcio 1912 in 1960, meeting immediate success. He won Serie A in 1962 and went on to lift the European Champion Clubs’ Cup in 1963. He then repeated this winning streak – with another league title in 1968 the prelude to him lifting the Rossoneri’s second European Cup in 1969 as captain.

This triumph earned him individual plaudits and he was awarded the France Football Ballon d’Or in 1969.

Rivera played a total of 501 Serie A matches for Milan, scoring 160 goals. Internationally, he represented Italy 60 times, scoring 14 goals. He participated in four FIFA World Cups – 1962, 1966, 1970 and 1974 – and was part of the Squadra Azzurra that won the UEFA European Football Championship in 1968.

Gianni Rivera, now aged 68, is the latest in a distinguished group of football greats to collect the UEFA President’s Award – a tribute to outstanding achievements, professional excellence and exemplary personal qualities. Recent recipients include Raymond Kopa (2010), Eusébio (2009), Sir Bobby Charlton (2008) and Alfredo di Stéfano (2007).

The ceremony will be followed by a photo opportunity on stage and a press conference attended by Gianni Rivera, Michel Platini and Milan vice-president and CEO, Adriano Galliani.

http://www.acmilan.com/en/news/show/139620

http://youtu.be/Lvrq3avvz7A

(IMG:http://a.yfrog.com/img620/6996/87pcx.jpg)

(IMG:http://a.yfrog.com/img739/1673/gqquf.jpg)

(IMG:http://media3.acmilan.com/uploads/news/images/ppg11.jpg)

This post has been edited by Jack Bauer: Mar 13 2012, 12:34 AM
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acid911
post Mar 13 2012, 01:06 PM
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Brilliant read. (IMG:style_emoticons/default/cool.gif) Thanks for sharing!
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