Football supporters who travel to South Africa next year for the 2010 FIFA World Cup™ will receive the traditional warm South African welcome irrespective of which of the nine host cities they visit.
This was made apparent on the eve of the Final Draw for the 2010 FIFA World Cup where the host cities spoke to attending media and dignitaries about how they plan to host the world next year.
"We are 189 days towards the World Cup and as a city we are more than ready to host the world. Our accommodation is friendly, our transport is ready and our streets are safe," said Nelson Mandela Bay/Port Elizabeth Mayor, Zanoxolo Wayile.
Cape Town, Durban, Johannesburg, Mangaung/Bloemfontein, Nelson Mandela Bay/Port Elizabeth, Nelspruit, Polokwane, Rustenburg and Tshwane/Pretoria will host all of the 64 games over the one month long tournament from 11 June to 11 July 2010 but for Mayor of Cape Town, Dan Plato, it is team work that will win the game.
"I want to wish all the cities success with their events. Our success will be your success and your success will be our success. But it is not only about the host cities but as South Africa on a whole as a country. We will need to succeed to ensure that South Africa succeeds."
The Chief Executive Officer of the 2010 FIFA World Cup Organising Committee South Africa, Dr Danny Jordaan, reminded the Host Cities about the important work ahead.
“Tomorrow we will know where the teams will be playing and you will know who will be playing the opening match in your host city. Tonight we are paying tribute to the host cities for agreeing to host this event next year. The World Cup will not be hosted in the offices of the Organising Committee but in these cities.”
Jordaan also welcomed two legends of African football, Abedi Pele Ayew and Ndaye Mulamba at the event. Mulamba now lives in Cape Town and still holds the record for the most number of goals (9) in an Africa Cup of Nations tournament.
Mulamba, who captained his national side, then Zaire, in the 1974 FIFA World Cup said he was immensely proud that the World Cup was finally being held in Africa and he brought with him a message of support for the African countries participating in the World Cup.
“Everybody in Africa will get behind the countries who participate in the World Cup and I am very sure that one of the countries from our continent will do very well next year,” a visibly emotional and overwhelmed Mulamba said.