The 7th World Cup has finished

The 7th World Cup (for Children from Care Homes) has finished with Ukraine as it’s champion, but I had a strong impression that each and every player was a victor. This wonderful football festivity has shown how young footballers from 27 different countries can fight, rejoice and just be friends. You have created this amazing atmosphere of friendship and joy, even though you couldn’t always clearly communicate because of the language barriers.

On Monday, just after the Cup games, teams from Japan and Slovakia met for a friendship match at 6 a.m. I thought that the young players were exhausted, but they decided to meet again on the pitch so early in the morning, because the Slovakia team was leaving at 8.30. It’s wonderful to have friends all over the world.

This year for the first time we have seen five teams perform on stage – they have shown that football is not their only talent – they can also sing and dance! Each of the teams has displayed their respect for their country and culture. We will continue to have artistic performances of the teams during future World Cups.

Observers of the Championships have noticed the huge progress of football teams. I am convinced that the level you have presented will give you the opportunity to play in great football clubs.

Many thanks to the caregivers and coaches who have come here with the teams. Thanks to your work and commitment children from all over the world have given us this amazing show. You are a wonderful football family who has shown how football can overcome differences and boundaries to unite young footballers from differents parts of the world.

See you next year!