JÜRGEN KLOPP, MARC-ANDRÉ TER STEGEN AND BERND SCHUSTER ARE THE GERMAN FOOTBALL AMBASSADORS 2019

JÜRGEN KLOPP, MARC-ANDRÉ TER STEGEN AND BERND SCHUSTER ARE THE GERMAN FOOTBALL AMBASSADORS 2019

German Football Ambassador e.V. strengthens commitment to women's football

At this year's award ceremony of the German Football Ambassador, FC Liverpool coach Jürgen Klopp beat Mongolian national coach Michael Weiß and Petra Landers, who is engaged in Zambia, in the main category. Marc-André ter Stegen from FC Barcelona won the audience award in an exciting finish ahead of Julian Gressel from Atlanta United and Leroy Sané from Manchester City. Several tens of thousands of fans voted for him in an online voting. The "blonde angel" Bernd Schuster received the honorary prize.

"The top-class event at the Federal Foreign Office in Berlin was opened this time by Michelle Müntefering, Minister of State for International Cultural Policy responsible for sports promotion and representing Heiko Maas.

The jury, which this year also included Horst Hrubesch and Berti Vogts for the first time, nominated three football personalities for the main prize: the later winner Jürgen Klopp, Petra Landers and Michael Weiß, all of whom contributed in completely different ways to Germany's positive reputation in the world. President of the association Roland Bischof, who visited all three nominees in their countries of operation, explained: "Michael Weiß has been an ambassador for German football in Asia and Africa for twenty years, Petra Landers is involved in an extraordinary manner in Zambia and Jürgen Klopp has literally enchanted Liverpool like Liverpool has not experienced for 40 years. All three deserve the highest recognition". The laudation for Jürgen Klopp was held by the managing director of Borussia Dortmund, Hans-Joachim "Aki" Watzke in the usual relaxed manner.

The Spanish ambassador Ricardo Martinez gave the laudatory speech to Bernd Schuster, who has legendary status in Spain. He was the first of only two players worldwide to play in all three major Spanish clubs (Real, Atletico, Barca) and win numerous titles. Everyone in Spain knows him."

The 1980 European Champion was also active as a coach mainly in Spain, where he once again became the Spanish champion with Real Madrid. Bernd Schuster enjoyed his time in Berlin and was delighted about his award with words of appreciation for the club: "A really great idea".

Marc-André ter Stegen also lives in Spain, where fans voted him the winner of the audience voting. The FC Barcelona goalkeeper has been playing successfully and at the highest level for years. Since the 2015 triple winner is in the final phase of the season, he could only join in via video and thanked from Barcelona. The award will be presented to him afterwards.

As is usual with the German Football Ambassador, all winners and nominees again named charitable organisations for their prize money in order to promote social projects for which they are committed. Vice President and CSR expert Dr. Norbert Taubken enthused: "That's one of the best things about our award! We are already socially active in over 25 countries. Thanks to all involved."

In addition to an entertaining and interesting talk with "Aki" Watzke and DFB vice-president Dr. Reinhard Koch, moderated by kicker publisher Rainer Holzschuh, the German Football Ambassador also had a surprise in store: "We want to become even more involved in women's football in the future!

KLOPP, LANDERS, WEISS NOMINATED FOR THE AWARD GERMAN FOOTBALL AMBASSADOR 2019

KLOPP, LANDERS, WEISS NOMINATED FOR THE AWARD GERMAN FOOTBALL AMBASSADOR 2019

The German Football. Ambassador announces the three nominations for the main category "Coaches": Jürgen Klopp, Petra Landers and Michael Weiss are the candidates for the succession of the acting football ambassador Gert Engels.

Jury chairman and kicker publisher Rainer Holzschuh emphasizes: "All three nominees perform outstandingly on completely different levels. Nevertheless, the jury's decision was unanimous." The jury is made up of top-class experts - for the first time the jury will include Horst Hrubesch and Berti Vogts as well as Kathrin Müller-Hohenstein on the advisory board.

The nominations: The best-known coach is probably Jürgen Klopp, who after his successful stops in Mainz and Dortmund was drawn to FC Liverpool on "the island", where he is not only celebrated by the football fans, but his incomparably positive appearance almost declared the "German Messiah".

Petra Landers was more successful than both of her competitors in her active time and celebrated great national and international success as a second nominee. The 1989 European Champion is currently on the road in Sambia at regular intervals in a long-term project, among other things. She was also the only German to participate when in 2017 a selection of international players played together in the crater of Kilimanjaro in Kenya, the highest football match in the world, at 5,729 metres, to promote more equality between girls and women in sport.

The circle is closed by Michael Weiss, who has been nominated for the second time since 2013, something only Jürgen Klinsmann has achieved so far. He is currently coaching Mongolia's national team. He has also been to exotic places as an ambassador for German football, such as the Philippines, Rwanda, China and Japan.

The president of the association, Roland Bischof, will now visit all three nominees in their countries of activity in February/March to present them with the nomination certificates and to gather impressions of their work on and beside the site. The charity projects supported by the nominees with their prize money will also be visited. This year, the Federal Foreign Office and the Goethe-Institute will once again be actively involved in preparing, organising and carrying out the respective trips.

The winner will be chosen in May 2019 in Berlin, where the current Foreign Minister has been present at the Federal Foreign Office for the past five years. Heiko Maas will try to be there again this year.

The previous football ambassadors in this category were called: Holger Obermann (2013, Nepal), Monika Staab (2014, Qatar), Jürgen Klinsmann (2015, USA), Gernot Rohr (2016, Burkina Faso), Horst Kriete (2017, South Africa) and Gert Engels (2018, Japan).