Former Italy forward Del Piero thanks Nelson Mandela
World Cup-winner pays tribute on news of death06 December, 12:09
Mandela died Thursday at the age of 95 after long lung illness.
''Sport has the power to change the world. The power to unite people. It speaks in a language that everyone understands.
Thank you, Mandela,'' Del Piero, a member of Italy's 2006 World Cup-winning squad who now plays in Australia for Sydney, wrote on his website.
Mandela's exact words were ''sport has the power to change the world, it has the power to inspire. It has the power to unite people in a way that little else does. It speaks to youth in a language they understand. Sport can create hope where once there was only despair. It is more powerful than government in breaking down racial barriers,'' according to the International Political Forum.