The friendly football game between Nea Salamina and Maguca Turku F.C. took place in the mixed village of Pyla on Tuesday afternoon , March 19th 2019.
It was the second football game between teams from Cyprus’ largest ethnic communities since 1955.
The two teams, originally based in Famagusta, competed with their normal squads in the first half, while in the second they mixed their squads.
The aim of this initiative , was to promote lasting Peace on the island of Cyprus by strengthening the ties between the two communities that inhabit the island.
We believe that through not only sport but also through any other form of creative bi-communal work , the actual ties between the people are reinforced in way that gradually eradicates hostility and does not leave room for conflict to ever arise again.
The game was organised by Stelios Philanthropic Foundation and the organisation Peace and Sport.
Around 1,000 people attended the game.
President Anastasiades, Sir Stelios Haji-Ioannou, UNFICYP head Elizabeth Spehar and U.K. High Commissioner Stephen Lillie attended the event.
Former Chelsea legend and deputy vice president of Peace and Sport, Didier Drogba was also at the game.
As Nelson Mandela had said:
” Sport has the power to change the world. It has the power to inspire, it has the power to unite people in a way that little else does. It speaks to youth in a language they understand. Sport can create hope, where once there was only despair. It is more powerful than governments in breaking down racial barriers. It laughs in the face of all types of discrimination. ”