Michael van Praag has been re-elected as chairman of the Royal Netherlands Football Association (KNVB) with the 63-year-old receiving unanimous support at the Dutch association's annual general meeting.
In a speech ahead of the vote, UEFA Executive Committee member Van Praag underlined the importance of sportsmanship as he looked back on a year in which the Dutch national team finished runners-up in the FIFA World Cup. "Of course, I always want to win," he said, "and second place is not as good, but when the battle is over, and the winner is decided, you have to show the best side of yourself, congratulate your opponents and accept defeat in a sportsmanlike way.
"It is up to us to set that good example, and not to allow sporting setbacks to make us lose ourselves," he added. "My motto always is 'defeat makes you stronger', and that is how I behave after a defeat. That is why I am proud of the staff, players and fans of the Dutch national team. The pride and happiness of the fans helped the players to get over the setback of the loss of the final."
Once an amateur football referee, Van Praag became the KNVB's 12th president since its formation in August 2008, succeeding Mathieu Sprengers, who had died in April that year. He was president of AFC Ajax from 1989 to 2003, with the Amsterdam club winning the 1994/95 UEFA Champions League under his tenure. His father Jaap had previously been Ajax chairman from 1964 to 1978.