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Michael van Praag: Building Bridges

Building Bridges

Van praag: congratulations to ceferin

“Losing is never fun, but it’s a fact that you need to take well. It’s a part of sport. Congratulations, Aleksander." Read the response of Michael van Praag in full.

I’m standing here on this stage because I’ve lost and that’s why I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate a winner. The man who beat me in the race for the presidency of UEFA, Aleksander Ceferin. The man who managed to persuade a majority of his plans and his talents. Democratically chosen, he will lead UEFA into the future. I would like to congratulate Aleksander and UEFA warmly, so please give it up for both of them.

Losing is never fun, but it’s a fact that you need to take well. After all, losing is part of sport. I can handle it, but it does hurt a little right now. But I promise you and I promise Aleksander that I will support him wholeheartedly. I look forward to working with him as the new president.

We were each other’s rivals, but we no longer are. From now on, we’re standing shoulder to shoulder again. Actually, our plans had a lot in common. On my visits to the many associations and during meetings and football matches, you told me that our stories were not that far apart. We both pitched our plans for the future in our own ways. We both stand for a united UEFA, a balanced UEFA, a transparent UEFA, for fair chances for all countries, and for a strong UEFA. That is what we’ve ardently advocated.

Based on that, I have confidence in a beautiful future for UEFA under the leadership of Aleksander Ceferin, you can count on me. I’m your man. I’ll be happy to help you. Good luck!