Marco van Basten handed FIFA role

Heerenveen head coach Marco van Basten looks on prior to Eredivisie match between PEC Zwolle and SC Heerenveen on December 13, 2013
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Former Netherlands, Ajax and AC Milan striker Marco van Basten is appointed as FIFA's new chief officer for technical development.

Former Netherlands international Marco van Basten has been appointed as FIFA's new chief officer for technical development.

The 51-year-old has a rich background within football, having won the Ballon d'Or three times during a playing career cut short by injury before moving into management.

Van Basten now switches to a new role, where he will be "heading up all technical areas ranging from football technology innovation to refereeing".

"It's a great honour for me to be appointed for this assignment. I'm very proud to have to opportunity to work in the Home of FIFA, the home of world football. I hope to be able to give my contribution to ensure that football remains the number one sport in the world," he said in a statement.

"Football is spectacular and it has to stay spectacular in every sense. We all love this sport. That's why I will work hard to develop football technically in the way that our sport will give to the fans and the players always emotions and joy."

FIFA president Gianni Infantino added: "Marco van Basten is football. We have to cherish football, we have to protect football and develop football. Marco is a great expert, not only a legend. There is a lot he can do for football, for the game and around the pitch in the world. I'm extremely happy that he joined our team and I'm sure that he will do a great job."

Van Basten scored 277 goals in 373 appearances for Ajax and AC Milan, in addition to 24 goals in 58 appearances at international level.

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