Still in the World Cup Russia 2018 fever, on June 10, the Soccer Aid for Unicef match was held in Manchester with Hublot as its official timekeeper. Former sprinting athlete and Olympic champion Usain Bolt joined the match for the first time as a football player.
Back in February, sprinting legend Usain Bolt surprised the more than 5 million fans following him on social media by announcing his transition to the world of football, fulfilling his childhood dream of becoming a footballer. After his first appearance on the pitch during a “friendly” organised by Hublot, which took place alongside the Baselworld 2018 watch fair, and which saw Diego Maradona and José Mourinho’s teams battle it out, he captained the World XI team during the Soccer Aid World XI match, taking on the England team. This clash of the Titans was held in the iconic Old Trafford stadium in Manchester, just four days before the 2018 FIFA World CupTM kicks off in Russia.
“As a child, I dreamt of becoming a professional football player, and playing with the Manchester United team. Today, being captain of a football team, on this iconic field with Hublot, and to play for such a good cause, helping children in need: it’s has been a great experience!” Usain Bolt, Hublot Ambassador, 8-time Olympic Champion and 11-time World Champion.
“Since 2006, Unicef has been able to provide help to many children in need thanks to these football matches. During this match, Hublot had the privilege of contributing to this honourable initiative in its role as both official timekeeper and supporter of the team captained by its ambassador, Usain Bolt. A formidable way to mark the impending start of the 2018 FIFA World CupTM!” Ricardo Guadalupe, CEO of Hublot.
The charity match was co-founded by British singer Robbie Williams. “I co-founded Soccer Aid in 2006, and since then we’ve helped to raise over £24m for children in danger around the world. We hope to raise even more this year with the help of the public, sponsors and the UK Government (who is matching donations pound-for-pound), so that we can further help this fantastic cause”. Robbie Williams, Hublot Friend of the Brand.
WORLD STARS SUPPORT
The match was organised under the Unicef banner to raise money to help children at risk across the world. A total of over £24 million had already been raised through ticket sales and donations before this latest match even started. This incredible sum is the combined total from the previous Unicef Soccer Aid matches, which have now been taking place for twelve years. At the 2016 event, the England team beat the World XI with a score of 3-2.
Facing them will be Usain Bolt’s team, which features former professional footballers and celebrities such as the chef Gordon Ramsay. Together, they represent the rest of the world. A long-standing Hublot ambassador, the Lightning Bolt was able to count on support from the Nyon manufacture when forming his team for this latest challenge. Their opponents were Robbie Williams’ England team. A Unicef UK ambassador and friend of the Swiss watch brand, the singer was responsible for co-founding and launching the Soccer Aid initiative in 2006. He was surrounded during this match by an all-star team, including four-time Olympic champion Sir Mo Farah. At the end of a thrilling clash, the England team managed to claim victory with a score of 4-3.
Here are the full line-ups at the Soccer Aid match:
WORLD XI TEAM
Usain Bolt, Gordon Ramsay, Brendan Cole, Clarence Seedorf, Robert Pirès, Yaya Tourè, Kevin Pietersen, Dan Carter, Martin Compston, Ioan Gruffudd, Jaap Stam, Ashley Fongho, Patrick Kluivert, Edwin van der Sar, Eric Cantona, Robbie Keane, Jeremy Lynch and Nicky Byrne.
Robbie Williams, Sir Mo Farah, Mark Wright, Myles Stephenson, Paddy McGuinness, Joe Wicks, David Seaman, Jamie Redknapp, Danny Murphy, Michael Owen, Jamie Redknapp, Wes Brown, Sam Allardyce, John Bishop, Olly Murs, Ben Shephard, Bradley Walsh, Freddie Flintoff, Lee Mack, Damien Lewis, David Harewood, Billy Wingrove and Phil Neville.
BIG BANG UNICO SOCCER AID UNICEF SPECIFICATIONS
411.NX.1170.RX.SAU18 – Unique Piece 45 mm
10 ATM (100m)
Satin-finished and polished titanium
Satin-finished and polished titanium
Black composite resin lower bezel
with 6 H-shaped titanium screws
Sapphire with anti-reflective treatment
Satin-finished titanium engraved “SPECIAL PIECE”
And sapphire with anti-reflective treatment and “SAU18” logo printed Mat black skeleton
HUB1242 UNICO manufacture self-winding chronograph flyback movement with column wheel
330 (38 rubies)
4 Hz (28’800 A/h)
Black structured lined rubber strap Titanium deployant buckle clasp