» Óscar Washington Tabárez, named UNESCO Champion for Sport
27.01.2012 - UNESCOPRESS

Óscar Washington Tabárez, named UNESCO Champion for Sport

© Government of Uruguay - Tabárez, also known as "El Maestro", worked as a teacher in Uruguay in the late sixties

Óscar Washington Tabárez, the Uruguayan national football team manager, will be named UNESCO Champion for Sport by the Director-General of UNESCO, Irina Bokova, during a ceremony at Organization Headquarters on 30 January (11 a.m., 7th floor).

The nomination comes “in recognition of his commitment to promote education and sport programmes for vulnerable children in Uruguay, his charitable activities in the framework of the Tabárez Project, and his dedication to the ideals and aims of the Organization.” Diego Lugano, captain of the Uruguayan national team and defender of the Paris Saint Germain football team will also attend the ceremony.

Known as el Maestro, Óscar Washington Tabárez, was born in Montevideo in 1947. He began his career in football with the Montevideo Football Club (Institución Atlética Sud América) in 1967 and, after qualifying as a teacher, combined careers in teaching and football. 

Working in primary schools in poor neighbourhoods, he also contributed to literacy training for adults and education for the visually handicapped. In Uruguay, Tabárez works with programmes such as Sport for Peace and Development and Sport for All, which use sport to favour the inclusion of the under-privileged. 

After playing for five Uruguayan and one Mexican team, Tabárez, became a professional coach. His trophies as national football manager include the 2011 Copa América, won by Uruguay and the country’s fourth place in the 2010 World Cup (South Africa). He has also coached teams in Colombia (Dportivo Cali), Argentina (Vélez Sarsfield and Boca Juniors), Spain (Oviedo) and Italy (Cagliari and AC Milan). 

UNESCO Champions for Sport are outstanding personalities such as World Formula 1 champion Michael Schumacher, Olympic judo champion David Douillet, football player Pelé, and pole vault Olympic champion Sergey Bubka. They disseminate UNESCO’s message and promote the values of physical education and sport to prepare a better future for the young. 


         Journalists wishing to cover the ceremony require accreditation


             Djibril Kebé, UNESCO Press Service, d.kebe(at)unesco.org

     Isabelle le Fournis, UNESCO Press Service, i.le-fournis(at)unesco.org

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