Europe XI v Africa XI (1997)

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Europe XI v Africa XI
Date 29 January 1997
Venue Estádio da Luz, Lisbon, Portugal
Referee Vitor Melo Pereira (Portugal)
Attendance 8,000

Europe XI v Africa XI (1997) was a friendly football match that took place on January 29, 1997 at the Estádio da Luz in Lisbon, Portugal, between a European select side and an African select side.[1] The match was jointly organized by UEFA and CAF as part of the European Year against Racism.[2] The African XI won 2–1 with goals from Abedi Pele and Mustapha Hadji.[3]


The European Union's "Year Against Racism" started with an exhibition match between All-Star teams representing Europe and Africa. The following day, UEFA, European football's ruling body, and CAF, its African counterpart, held their first joint-executive meeting in Lisbon where they signed a friendship agreement which ended years of barely concealed hostility. The agreement obliged the two confederations to "undertake extensive co-operation in all football-related matters as partners with equal rights".[3]

The European side, selected by Rinus Michels and Berti Vogts, had a 17-man squad which contained four players who were among Germany's Euro 96 winners, including their captain, Jürgen Klinsmann, as well as the Dutch twin brothers Ronald and Frank de Boer, and Zvonimir Boban, Milan's Croat midfielder. While many of the world's top players were involved, there were no English players in the European squad as the Premier League had a packed schedule that night. No players from eastern European clubs were involved either, because of their winter break. The African All-Stars 18-man squad, selected by Rabah Madjer and Mawade Wade, included four of Nigeria's Olympic gold-medal winning squad and two of South Africa's African championship winning squad.[2]

Selecting Benfica's Stadium of Light to host the event was a deliberate choice serving to recognise the enormous contribution that Benfica's greatest player, Eusébio, had made to European football. Benfica had players in both squads, with Portugal's João Pinto in the European camp and Paulo António of Angola, in the African. Because the intention was to give everybody a game, both teams were allowed to use two re-substitutions - the sending back on a player previously substituted - in the event of second-half injuries. As a continuing part of the anti-racism initiative, the Under-17 Meridian Cup, which comprises four nations from each continent, kicked off two days later.[2]


29 January 1997
Europe XI 1 – 2 Africa XI
Guérin Goal 43' Pele Goal 14'
Hadji Goal 78'
Estádio da Luz, Lisbon
Attendance: 8,000
Referee: Vítor Pereira (Portugal)
GK 20 Netherlands Edwin van der Sar Substituted off 60'
2 Croatia Zvonimir Boban
4 Netherlands Frank de Boer
5 Netherlands Ronald de Boer
7 France Vincent Guérin
9 Portugal João Pinto Substituted off 46'
10 Germany Jürgen Klinsmann Substituted off 46'
11 Germany Jürgen Kohler
14 Portugal Paulinho Santos Substituted off 46'
15 Portugal Rui Costa Substituted off 46'
16 Germany Matthias Sammer (c) Substituted off 46'
GK 1 Russia Stanislav Cherchesov Substituted in 60'
DF 6 Switzerland Stéphane Henchoz Substituted in 46'
MF 12 Germany Andreas Möller Substituted in 46'
MF 13 Czech Republic Pavel Nedvěd Substituted in 46'
FW 3 Italy Pierluigi Casiraghi Substituted in 46'
FW 6 Portugal Domingos Paciência Substituted in 46'
Germany Berti Vogts
Netherlands Rinus Michels
GK 20 South Africa Andre Arendse Substituted off 46'
DF 2 Ghana Frank Amankwah
DF 16 Nigeria Taribo West
DF 5 South Africa Mark Fish
MF 7 Nigeria Sunday Oliseh
MF 12 Egypt Radwan Yasser Substituted off 65'
MF 14 Algeria Moussa Saïb Substituted off 58'
MF 10 Ghana Abedi Pele (c)
FW 3 Nigeria Tijani Babangida Substituted off 58'
FW 8 Ivory Coast Ahmed Ouattara
FW 9 Angola Paulão Substituted off 64'
GK 1 Nigeria Abiodun Baruwa Substituted in 46'
MF 6 Morocco Mustapha Hadji Substituted in 58'
FW 4 Mozambique Chiquinho Conde Substituted in 64'
FW 11 Angola Quinzinho Substituted in 58'
FW 15 Senegal Souleyman Sané Substituted in 65'
Algeria Rabah Madjer
Senegal Mawade Wade

Assistant referees:
João Esteves (Portugal)
Carlos Matos (Portugal)


  1. ^ International Matches 1997 - Other
  2. ^ a b c "Football: Europe v Africa match makes history". The Independent. 29 January 1997. Retrieved 26 May 2011. 
  3. ^ a b Metcalf, Rupert (31 January 1997). "Football around the world". The Independent. Retrieved 26 May 2011. 

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