Ballack, Robinho, Ardiles and Villa backing England's 2018 World Cup bid
23 October 2009 10:59
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Michael Ballack has joined the rollcall of foreign stars who have agreed to act as ambassadors for England's 2018 World Cup bid.
Germany captain Ballack will stand alongside England skipper John Terry, Robinho, Michael Essien and a host of other Barclays Premier League players, as well as David Beckham and former heroes like Ossie Ardiles and Ricky Villa - not to mention members of the England women's team and representatives of the England disabled teams.
Alan Shearer and Sven Goran Eriksson have also pledged their support as part of a squad of ambassadors that boasts more than 3,000 international caps and 70 World Cup appearances.
Ballack, capped 97 times by Germany, said he has fallen for the English game during his time with Chelsea, who he joined in 2006.
'The atmosphere and competitive nature of English football has been a great experience, playing with and against the best players in the world,' he said. 'England would be a fitting host for the 2018 World Cup.'
Terry said: 'England would be a fantastic home for the World Cup. Important names in football have been coming forward to find out how they can help and our passionate fans can also make a real difference by texting to 62018 to back the bid or visiting www.england2018bid.com.'
Ossie Ardiles and Ricky Villa
Up for the cup: Ossie Ardiles and Ricky Villa are now backing England's World Cup bid
Andy Anson, the chief executive of England 2018, said: 'We are delighted to have secured support from right across the football family.'
ENGLAND 2018 AMBASSADORS (Eng unless stated) - A Mokoena (SA), A Shearer, A Song (Cam), Andrew Cole, Ashley Young, B Deane, B Robson, C Edwards (Trin), C Powell, C Regis, D Beckham, D James, D Seaman, D Walker, E Heskey, G Southgate, G Lineker, G Mabbutt, G Zola (It), G Hoddle, G Le Saux, G Taylor, H Wilkinson, J Milner, J Barnes, J Mikel Obi (Ngr), J Terry, J Yobo (Ngr), Kanu (Ngr), K Jones (Trin), K Toure (IvC), L Radebe (SA), L Blissett, M Ballack (G) M Chopra, M Essien (Gha), M Izzet (Tur), O Ardiles (Arg), P Elliott, P Ince, P Parker, P Beardsley, P Crouch, P Shilton, P Neville, R Clemence, R Wilkins, R Villa (Arg), R Ferdinand, R Earle (Jam), R Di Matteo (It), Robinho (Brz), R Santa Cruz (Par), S Kalou (IvC), S Campbell, S Gerrard, S Pienaar (SA), S Pearce, S Goran Eriksson (Swe), T Sheringham, T Venables, T Adams, T Woodcock, V Anichebe (Ngr), V Anderson, W Rooney, Z Rehman (Pak).