- Official Emblem of Uruguay 2018 was unveiled in Montevideo
- Diego Forlan in attendance, Deyna Castellanos sent inspiring video message
- Uruguay’s U-17 captain Deyna Morales: "It’s going to be a unique experience"
The high point of the launch of the official emblem of the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup Uruguay 2018 came when players from the host national team gathered on the stage with legendary *La Celeste *striker Diego Forlan, receiving a rapturous round of applause from the floor.
“You can’t imagine how jealous I am that you’ll be playing in a World Cup here in our country,” said Forlan to Uruguay’s U-17 captain Deyna Morales.
“It’s going to be a unique experience for sure,” said the 16-year-old, speaking at an event that marked the start of the countdown to the tournament and which was held in the Salon de los Pasos Perdidos at the Uruguayan parliament building in Montevideo.
“My team-mates and I will be proud to wear the Uruguay jersey in front of our own fans. We hope we can live up to expectations,” said the midfielder to the 150 guests and members of the media.
Like Forlan, Morales’ namesake Deyna Castellanos is an ambassador of the tournament. Though she was unable to attend due to her footballing commitments in the USA, the Venezuelan striker did send a powerful video message to “all the players who will be battling it out for a place at the World Cup”.
“You will be fighting for your own dreams and those of your teams,” added Castellanos. “Don’t let anyone tell you we shouldn’t be playing this sport, and above all don’t stop growing as players and people. Best of luck to all of you!”
The emblem: sources of inspiration
The ceibo: Uruguay’s national flower. Red in colour, it is symbolised by the trunk supporting the sun at the top of the emblem and represents the beauty of Uruguay.
The flag: the sun is taken from the national flag and embodies the energy, dynamism and passion of the country.
Candombe: a traditional Uruguayan music and dance form, it is expressed by the figure of a man playing the repinique, the drum used for candombe. His presence signifies tradition, celebration and love of life.
What they said *“It is very significant that we have a woman here today attending the launch of the U-17 Women’s World Cup as the president of Uruguay.”
*Sarai Bareman, FIFA Chief Women’s Football Officer, on the presence at the event of Uruguayan Vice-President Lucia Topolansky, who was there on behalf of the country’s president, Tabare Vazquez, who was away on official duty
“Football is not for men, women, boys or girls. Football is football.”
*Wilmar Valdez, President of the Uruguayan Football Association*
“Football is a celebration; not the matches but the sport in itself. That’s what we want the World Cup here to be – a celebration!” Fernando Caceres, Minister of Sport
- Dates: the tournament runs from 13 November to 1 December.
- Venues: Montevideo, Colonia de Sacramento and Maldonado.
- Teams: there will be 16 in all. A total of 32 matches will be played.
- Who is already through? The host nation have been joined by the three Asian representatives: defending champions Korea DPR, Korea Republic and Japan; and by the Oceania representative, New Zealand.
*Did you know? *Aside from its great artistic value, the Salon de los Pasos Perdidos also occupies a highly symbolic place in Uruguayan culture. It was there that Alcides Ghiggia, the last survivor of the Uruguay team that won the FIFA World Cup™ in Brazil in 1950, lay in state following his death.