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Annan welcomes Real Madrid v. Roma soccer match in US to help anti-AIDS effort

Annan welcomes Real Madrid v. Roma soccer match in US to help anti-AIDS effort

United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan today welcomed the announcement that two champion European football teams will play an exhibition game in the United States to raise money for the global fight against HIV/AIDS, a UN spokesman announced today.

The game, between Spanish powerhouse Real Madrid and Italy’s Roma, will be played on 8 August in New Jersey, according to spokesman Fred Eckhard. A proportion of the funds raised will be shared by United Nations programmes to combat HIV/AIDS and the independent Global Fund for AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria. The Secretary-General will make brief remarks at the opening of the match, along with New Jersey Governor James E. McGreevey.

The match – an initiative of the Real Madrid club as part of its centennial celebration – will feature many players most recently seen in the World Cup, including two members of Brazil’s winning team – its captain Cafu and Roberto Carlos – Zinedine Zidane of France (a Goodwill Ambassador for the UN Development Programme), Raul of Spain and Francesco Totti of Italy. It will take place at Giants Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey, on 8 August at 7:45 p.m.

As part of the effort to promote the game, a billboard will be erected at the entrance to the Lincoln Tunnel, which connects New York City, the home of UN headquarters, with the neighbouring state of New Jersey.