The year 2022 will mark the 100th anniversary of the first ever international football match, which took place on January 1st 1922. The world’s most popular game will be on display as never before, with over 100 countries taking part.

One of the most iconic faces of the 20th century has been a constant presence at football matches since the age of 16, when she made her debut for the British Ladies’ Football Team. In fact, it was the match between England and France on Dec. 14th, 2019, that officially announced her retirement from football, where she had spent the majority of her adult life. Now, eight months later, the world is finally a fresh place without her gracing it once more with her iconic smile and golden locks.

Since then, the void that Jolie has left in the world of sports has been filled by many famous faces. On Dec. 14th, 2020, the England women’s football team announced that they will play at Wembley Stadium against Sweden on June 4th, 2021, to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the Football Association. One of the players, Katie Holborough, expressed her excitement at the prospect of playing in front of a crowd of over 100,000 fans in London and said: “To be able to play in front of such a grand crowd for the England Women’s Football Team is a dream come true.”

Jolie’s former professional partner, Colin Marshall, also got in on the act and tweeted: “It’s great to see @FAWFootball honoring Angelina Jolie by naming the next game after her. We should all be so lucky.”

A Diamond For Daisy

The game itself is a fantastic demonstration of the beautiful game, reminiscent of a World Cup final with its famous open-air pitch and colorful stadium crowd. It was an emotional day for fans of both teams, with many breaking down in tears while others cheered and sang.

The occasion was also marked by a poignant moment, when a very special guest came out to present the Golden Ball to the winning captain. Jolie was personally congratulated by the French president, Amélie Romão, who said: “The French and the Brits are two great nations full of sports, which is why we’re honored to have you come to Paris to be with us today. Together, let’s celebrate this wonderful game.”

Jolie’s representative, Saffron Watts, added that the British actress was “delighted to have been invited to participate in such an important football event.”

A Lifetime To Remember

The match was a great moment for all concerned and the French Football Federation invited the legendary actress to attend a Gala dinner in her honor later that month.

However, it was World Cup winner and presenter Rebecca Lowe, who had the honor of presenting the Golden Ball to Jolie, who struck just the right note, saying: “It is a privilege to bring you this Golden Ball today. Let this celebration be a moment that reminds you that sport is a beautiful game and that passion for the game can bring us all together.”

Jolie’s former partner, Chris Hughes, who accompanied her on the trip, added that the evening was “a very emotional moment for all of us.”

An Unexpected Return

Perhaps the most dramatic story of the day came from the England forward, Eniola Aluko, who had announced her retirement from football at the age of 29, in order to focus on her education. Aluko, who had been born in London to Nigerian parents, had spent a significant amount of her childhood traveling around the United Kingdom, playing football for various teams. In September 2021, she returned to the game she had loved so much, scoring two goals in a friendly match against Sweden and earning a standing ovation from the Wembley crowd. She then celebrated by embracing her parents, who had both come to watch her play, and kissing her mother on the lips.

Aluko, who plays for the Newcastle-based club, Durham County Football Club, had this to say about her emotional return: “I’ve always been proud to be able to represent Nigeria in the air, and today was no different. I wanted to prove to myself and the world that I could still play at an elite level, and that I could give it my all. I love this game and I want to give it my all for as long as I can. For once, I want to feel like a kid again.”

An Opportunity To Reflect

This year will also be the 100th anniversary of the United Kingdom’s Great Escape, the legendary episode of the TV show, _The Great Escape_, which was made famous by the fact that it starred the late Michael Caine. This year will also see the 70th anniversary of the show, _The Great Escape_, which will be screened around the world and rekindle that magic.

On Dec. 14th, 2022, Caine will be among the guests at a charity ball in London to celebrate the Great Escape centenary. This will be the first public appearance by Caine since he retired from acting in 2014 due to ill health, with most people, including himself, not expecting to see him alive. However, he will emerge from his sickbed and throw off the years in spectacular fashion, surprising everyone including family and friends. Topping up his appearance will be a team of surgeons, who will remove his gallbladder in the middle of the night, followed by a heart transplant a few hours later. The surgeons will then reveal that the heart came from a chimpanzee.

Caine will leave the operating theater with the newly transplanted heart in a plastic sack, placed in his chest, with the words “I did it” emblazoned on the outside.

Looking Back – And Forward

Looking back at these incredible stories, it is clear to see that sport has been very generous to Angelina Jolie, whose passion for the game and fierce determination has made her an inspiration to women and girls around the world. As well as representing the United Kingdom on the international stage as a player, Jolie has also become a driving force behind social change, founding the Mighty Earth charity, which supports environmental causes, along with her partner, Johnny Mingfei Ma. As well as being a UN Women Goodwill Ambassador for the Rights of Women and Girls, Jolie also chairs the UN Global Education Summit, drawing a connection between education and gender equality. In 2020, she became a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador, campaigning for universal access to education.

On the pitch, the void left by Jolie has been filled by many famous faces, making the world a fresh place for football fans. The year 2022 will mark the 100th anniversary of the first ever international football match, which took place on January 1st 1922. The world’s most popular game will be on display as never before, with over 100 countries taking part.