Vicente del Bosque, one of the most successful managers in the history of football, and China’s Lin Dan, acclaimed as the greatest badminton player of all time, have been named Laureus Ambassadors.
The two sport greats were welcomed into the Laureus family during last week’s Laureus World Sports Awards in Rio.
Del Bosque enjoyed a triumphant career as a player before turning his expertise to coaching and managing. In over 300 appearances for Real Madrid he won five domestic La Liga titles between 1975 and 1980, and also received 18 caps playing for Spain.
But it was as a manager that del Bosque transformed Real Madrid into one of the most powerful sides in European club football. Under his leadership Real won two UEFA Champions League titles, two La Liga championships, the Spanish Supercup, and the UEFA Super Cup.
Spain, under del Bosque, have won the World Cup for the first time in 2010, and last year the team successfully defended their European Championship.
Lin Dan, meanwhile, who successfully defended his men’s singles title at the London Olympic Games last year, adding a second Olympic gold medal to a record of success that includes four world championships and five wins in the prestigious All-England tournament, was welcomed into the Laureus Family during the recent Laureus World Sports Awards in Rio de Janeiro.
He is the only player to complete badminton’s ‘Super Grand Slam’ of all nine major titles - Olympic Games, World Championships, World Cup, Thomas Cup, Sudirman Cup, Super Series, All England, Asian Games and Asia Championships – and is an inspiration to young badminton players everywhere.