Etihad Airways, the national airline of the United Arab Emirates, has welcomed international football star Patrick Vieira as the latest high-profile addition to its Guest Ambassador programme. One of the most accomplished sportsmen of his generation, Vieira has won nine league titles and five national cups during his 17-year career as a midfielder with some of the world's leading football teams, including Manchester City, Arsenal, Inter Milan and Juventus. He was also part of France's national football team during its 1998 World Cup and Euro 2000 victories, and currently serves as Head of the Elite Development Squad at Manchester City Football Club, which is also sponsored by Etihad Airways. In his new role as Etihad Guest Ambassador, Vieira will work on a number of initiatives to promote Etihad Airways in the UK and other key markets around the world. The agreement builds upon the success of several grass roots sporting initiatives run by Etihad Airways and Patrick Vieira in the past two years, focused on the athletic development of youngsters in key markets around the world. Peter Baumgartner, Chief Commercial Officer at Etihad Airways, said, "When we look for Etihad Guest Ambassadors, we look for remarkable men and women who follow their aspirations, excel in their chosen fields, and also reflect the brand values of Etihad Airways. Patrick Vieira, who is one of the football world's biggest success stories, fits the description perfectly." Commenting on his appointment as Etihad Guest Ambassador, Patrick Vieira said, "I have been a regular traveller on Etihad Airways flights since the airline was first established a decade ago and really admire the superior service that is consistently delivered to guests."