MX23RW : Wednesday, July 18 18:39:39

The FA throws support behind Michael van Praag in UEFA presidential race

The FA backs Dutchman Michael van Praag to become the next UEFA president in the September 14 vote.

The Football Association has backed Dutchman Michael van Praag to become the next UEFA president.

Congress will meet in Athens next week to elect the successor to Michel Platini, who is serving a ban from all football activity amid allegations of corruption.

Van Praag is the current head of the Dutch FA and also has a role as vice-president of UEFA, and his English colleagues believe that he is the right man to take the European governing body forward.

FA vice-chairman and UEFA executive committee member David Gill said: "[Van Praag] is someone we have come to know very well and worked closely with in recent years, particularly because of our shared commitment to securing FIFA reform.

"As UEFA President, Mr Van Praag would be able to provide the strong and credible leadership European football requires at a crucial moment for the global game. He has an exemplary reputation, forged during his long association with Ajax and the Royal Netherlands Football Association.

"He would represent the European member associations with dignity and integrity while building on the good work UEFA has been carrying out in key areas such as promoting football for all, the growth of the women's game and the fight against discrimination.

"Having worked alongside him on the UEFA Executive Committee, Mr Van Praag is also the right choice to bring all aspects of the European game closer together, particularly with his knowledge of club football, and will be able to foster close ties with other confederations. In all, he has a proven track record across domestic and international matters that can only help UEFA go forward."

Slovenian FA president Aleksander Ceferin is also in the running ahead of the September 14 vote.

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The president of the Dutch Football Federation, Michael van Praag answers AFP journalists' questions during the 37th Confederation of African Football (CAF) Ordinary General Assembly on April 7, 2015
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