Championship – and to generate further excitement among either population the two local organising committees (LOC’s) have launched a promotional campaign called “Friends of UEFA EURO 2012”.
100 people in each country will get the privilege of being officially nominated “Friends of EURO”.
Among the first public figures nominated on the occasion of two special ceremonies, staged on 3
September in Kyiv and on 4 September in Lodz, were former President of Poland and founder of the
“Solidarnosc” movement, Nobel Peace Prize laureate 1983 Lech Walesa; and pole vault world-record holder, Olympic gold medallist in 1988, six times world champion and IOC member Serhiy Bubka.
Commenting on the historical staging of UEFA EURO 2012 in his homeland, Lech Walesa, said:
“I like winning and because I am on board I want to win the preparations for UEFA EURO 2012. I will
control and encourage the LOC representatives. UEFA EURO 2012 it is not purely sport event but a
reason for our national pride growing. Both Poland and Ukraine are young nations, and we need to put all our efforts to prepare the best possible tournament.”
Serhiy Bubka added: “I am extremely pleased to be a Friend of EURO 2012 and very grateful for this confidence. I am very glad that today we have one team that does everything possible to deliver the tournament at a really
high level. I am confident that EURO 2012 will be successful, and that our countries will be proud of an
excellent staging of the championship”.
World heavyweight boxing champions, and perhaps Ukraine's most renowned sportsmen, Vitaliy and Volodymyr Klychko, have joined Friends of UEFA EURO 2012, a campaign to promote the finals in Poland and Ukraine.
"I have been a friend of EURO since April 2007 when I took part in the final presentation [of Poland and Ukraine's bid] in Cardiff, and now it's a great pleasure for me and my brother to join this honoured group called Friends of EURO," said Vitaliy Klychko at Ukraine's second Friends of EURO event after the scheme's 3 September launch in the co-host nation.
The Klychko brothers signed up as Friends of EURO at the local organising committee (LCO) headquarters in Kyiv on Tuesday, following the appointment of their country's initial four members – Olympians Serhiy Bubka and Valeriy Borzov, publisher Ivan Malkovych and singer Svyatoslav Vakarchuk – at the Kyiv Intercontinental Hotel earlier this month.
Football Federation of Ukraine (FFU) president Grigoriy Surkis, deputy prime minister Borys Kolesnikov, UEFA Events SA operations director Martin Kallen and Ukrainian tournament director Markiyan Lubkivskyi welcomed the two national sporting icons whose mission it will be to promote the tournament throughout the world.
"The Klychko brothers are great worldwide representatives for Ukraine, and I'm sure they will represent the EURO 2012 with the same success," said Martin Kallen. "What can go wrong at EURO with such friends?"
WBC heavyweight champion Vitaliy Klychko sounded an equally confident note: "I have no doubts EURO 2012 will be a triumph for our country – in terms of football, economy and infrastructure development. The great Nelson Mandela once said, 'Sport has the power to change the world.' I agree wholeheartedly and want to rephrase that: 'EURO 2012 has the power to change Ukraine.' With hard work I believe we can organise a world-class tournament. However, this is a task not only for the LOC, the government, UEFA or the Klychko brothers and friends; it's a task for all Ukrainians."
Kyiv has chosen five best slogans for the 2012 UEFA European Football Championship.
According to vote count after the competition, the winners are the following slogans: Kyiv-2012. Europe without Borders, Football without Limits!, Kyiv-2012 - Let's Launch the Holiday; Play with Europe - Win in Kyiv!
These and some more slogans will be sent to UEFA to decide Kyiv's motto for UEFA EURO 2012.
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