The Football Association will officially kick-off its 150th anniversary year on Wednesday 16 January with a star-studded event ahead of what will be a spectacular 12-month celebration of the English game.
The hour-long show, hosted by Sky Sports News presenters Simon Thomas and Hayley McQueen, will see famous faces from the world of football, both past and present, as well as special guests coming together to honour this landmark year.
FA President His Royal Highness the Duke of Cambridge has recorded a special welcome message.
The launch will take place at the Grand Connaught Rooms, near Holborn tube station, where on 26 October 1863 The FA was formed.
400,000 volunteers, 300,000 coaches and 27,000 referees give their time every week to football with The FA reinvesting £100m into the game annually.
A wide range of the game including its unsung grassroots heroes will take centre stage during 2013 as The FA brings the history of football to life.
The FA150 anniversary calendar will feature a stellar line-up of events, including:
- England international matches against Brazil, Scotland and Republic of Ireland, plus a tour of Brazil
- FA England Awards at St. George’s Park on 3 February
- UEFA Congress and men’s and women’s UEFA Champions League Finals in May
- 20 years of women’s football and UEFA Women’s Euro 2013 in July
- National Football Day on 10 August
- Royal reception for 150 unsung grassroots heroes
- FA Gala Dinner at the Grand Connaught Rooms on 26 October.
FA Chairman David Bernstein said: “Our 150th year will be a major opportunity for us to showcase our work to the whole country and the wider world.
"It is a terrific achievement for any organisation and I certainly hope it will capture the imagination in the way it has mine. From humble beginnings to today’s global spectacle, we can be proud of this country’s contribution to football.
“It is incredible to think how the game has developed from that very first meeting at the Freemason’s Tavern in October 1863. Those founding fathers had real foresight to bring order and organisation to the game.
"Still, despite their sporting values and vision, no one could have foreseen what football would come to mean for the nation.”