Under the High Patronage of H.S.H. Prince Albert II of Monaco
Golden Foot 2012, International Football Career Award
Monte Carlo, 17th October

(Monte Carlo, 17th October)

The “Golden Foot,” an international career prize given every year to greatest footballers ever in the Principality of Monaco under the High Patronage of H.S.H. Prince Albert II was awarded to Zlatan Ibrahimovic of Sweden on Wednesday, October 17, 2012. From 2003 to 2011, he won eight national league titles in a row with the shirts of Ajax, Juventus, Inter Milan, Barcelona and AC Milan. Now aged 31, Sweden’s captain received his award – a golden mold of his foot – from Pele, named the greatest player of all time.


Edson Arantes do Nascimento, known to the world as Pelé, received the Golden Foot Award in Monte Carlo as the greatest football player to have ever played the game.

The Golden Foot Award, voted by media partners and the public, is given to legendary players who have contributed the most to the game. The ceremony is held every year in Monte Carlo under the auspices of HSH Prince Albert II. This year, the awards ceremony were held at the beautiful Sporting Monte Carlo “Salle de Etoile” with members of the Royal family and notable celebrities in attendance. Pelé received the award as well as placed his immortal footprints in the Champions Promenade in Monaco, alongside other football greats such as Ronaldo, Platini, Zidane, George Best, Diego Maradona, Romario, Luis Figo, Del Piero and many more.

: Football legend Pele – Edson Aranates do Nascimineto – poses for pictures during his visit to the Champions Promenade at Grimaldi Forum (Photo by Tullio M. Puglia/Getty Images for Golden Foot)

As a football player, Pelé reached heights that no other player has matched to this day. He started his professional career at the age of 16 for Santos Futebol Clube, a club he stayed with for nearly two decades. In 1958, Pelé won his first World Cup for Brazil at age 17 – the youngest winner ever. He went on to win another two World Cups in 1962 and 1970, making him the only person in the world with three Jules Rimet trophies to his name. Not only is Pelé the all-time leading scorer of Santos FC and the Brazil National Team, but he is also the all-time leading scorer in the history of the sport (1283 goals in 1366 matches). In 1974, Pelé came out of semi-retirement to sign with the New York Cosmos for the 1975-1977 seasons and led his team to the 1977 NASL championship. After his final career match on October 1, 1977 in front of more than 75,000 fans, Pelé shouted, “Love! Love! Love!” and urged his audience to pay attention to the youth of the world. Pelé will never forget where he came from and has a never-ending desire to give back.

Named “Football Player of the Century” by FIFA, Pelé’s importance and fame transcends his sport, his name is synonymous with excellence and he is recognized by billions of fans all over the world. Today, Pelé maintains his commitment to the sport and to society by fulfilling various roles as spokesperson, ambassador and philanthropist and through the popularity of football being the world’s game, he hopes to unite everyone in his quest for a better world and leave a lasting legacy for generations to come.

The names were chosen by the GOLDEN FOOT jury , composed by 52 journalists representing sports media all over the world. The winner was chosen by football fans, who will decide the star who will leave his footprints on THE CHAMPIONS PROMENADE, football “Walk of Fame”. Y

The confirmed legends invited to leave their footprints for the Champions Promenade alongside the Golden Foot winner are “O Rey” Pelé (Brazil, crowned as the best football of all time), Franco Baresi (Italy), Eric Cantona (France) and Lothar Matthaus (Germany).

French Legend Eric Cantona awarded the 2012 Golden Foot Award

Eric Cantona poses for a portrait prior the Golden Foot at Monte-Carlo Bay (Photo by Tullio M. Puglia/Getty Images for Golden Foot)

The great French player, Eric Cantona, who played his best football at Manchester United, was honored with the Golden Foot Award in Monte Carlo. The award was given to him at the Gala Ceremony to be held at the Sporting Salle des Étoiles. The legendary French player, known as “King Eric” to his fans at Manchester United, played with the number seven in his career there from 1992 to 1997. His talent, style of player, and strength of character left an indelible mark in the history of the Red Devils and the Premiere League. At Manchester United, Eric Cantona became English champion four times, winning two FA Cups as well.

Born in 1966, Eric Cantona  started his career at Auxerre later to move to England. He played 188 games for Manchester United scoring 82 goals. He played 45 times  for the French national “Blues” team, scoring 20 goals. His memorable skill is remembered in the spectacular goals he scored with Manchester United, making him the fan favourite. Cantona was voted the best Reds player of all time by the Manchester United fans. He was admitted to the English Football Hall of Fame in 2002,and in 2004 Eric Cantona was included in the Fifa’s list of the greatest 100 living players. After his football career terminated  at Manchester, Eric Cantona promoted Beach Soccer winning the world cup with France in 2005 as player coach. He has also appeared several movies as an actor and producer.

Eric Cantona will leave his immortal footprints in the Champions Promenade in Monaco on October 17th. The Golden Foot Award 2012 is held in conjunction with Sportel. Eric Cantona will be joined by “O Rey” Pelé, German star Lothar Matthaus and Italy’s Franco Baresi in this memorable award Gala ceremony. An auction of rare signed pictures of Eric Cantona, will take place at the
Gala to benefit Fight Aids Monaco.


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