Ruud Gullit says Holland/Belgium is the 'fun bid'

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The Independent Football

Holland/Belgium kicked off the 2018 World Cup presentations today by telling FIFA members that "small is beautiful" and theirs was the "fun bid".

The Low Countries' lively and amusing presentation was to be followed by Spain/Portugal, England and finally Russia ahead of this afternoon's vote by the 22-man FIFA executive committee.

Holland/Belgium bid president Ruud Gullit, the former Chelsea player and manager, said: "We have a great offer. It's a safe choice in every aspect.

"We are compact bid and our limited size is our real strength, it makes it easy for players, officials and of course the fans.

"Holland and Belgium were also among the founders of FIFA."

Michel D'Hooghe, FIFA's executive committee member from Belgium said: "We are not big countries but we have written great pages in the history of football."

Former Belgium goalkeeper Jean-Marie Pfaff stressed the Low Countries' bid was the "fun" bid.

He said: "Believe me it's fun in our countries. The bars, the terraces, the pubs - every host city has thousands of them. Between the matches people will want to have fun and enjoy themselves, really enjoy themselves."

Johan Cruyff, another legendary Dutch player, highlighted a legacy programme that aimed to tackle childhood obesity.

Cruyff said: "Children come home from school and both parents are working so what do they do - computers, Playstation or sport.

"Obesity is the next problem - children are overweight everywhere in the world because they do not do sport.

"What's also the easiest way to promote integration - sport.

"I think that our programme is fantastic in these sort of things, educating all kind of children."

Guus Hiddink, the much-travelled Dutch coach who is now manager of Turkey, was the last of the five speakers - meaning four of the five delegates were former players or coaches.