By chance I stumbled across this article about the role he has played in South Africa’s successful bid to host the 2010 World Cup. 2010′s Unlikely Star
By all accounts he was key in South Africa’s achievement. He is married to a South African but the place was in his heart since pre-season tour to Swaziland in 1984.
Ronaldo has been the talk of the town in recent days with his world record move to Real Madrid. The word legend has been banded about where he is concerned but I can’t see him ever being allowed to use the term The Arch to describe Archbishop Desmond Tutu.
“I was sat in the front row of the hall at Fifa’s HQ with the rest of the bid team,” he says. “When the result was announced we leapt up and ran onto the stage.
“The first person I came to was the Arch and we gave each other a big hug.”
“Sorry, Archbishop Desmond Tutu,” he laughs. “A few years earlier I’d asked him what I should call him a few years earlier and he just said ‘call me the Arch’.”
I hope Mabbutt gets the recognition he deserves and that we will be calling him Sir Gary Mabbutt before too long.