Speaking at the 150th anniversary gala of the FA, Prince William also praised the global footballing family and was keen to thank the founders of the game and those who have helped develop the sport.
"Tonight is not just an English celebration," the Duke said.
"Football is international in every possible way and I believe that the game's constantly evolving spirit and appeal is a consolidation of all its global influences.
"Every nation should be proud of their contribution to 150 years of football.
"With all that in mind, I consider my position as President of The FA to be an honour and a privilege."
William also stated his desire for the players in the England team to be as inspirational to young people as last year's stars of the London Games.
The Prince, addressing dignitaries such as FIFA president Sepp Blatter and his UEFA counterpart Michel Platini, said: "Our national players are role models for millions of young people and I think we need to give those highly pressured and driven players the support and training they need to live up to their rightly exalted status.
"We were as a nation so proud of our Team GB athletes at the Olympics and Paralympics, for their success on the field but also for the way they conducted themselves in interviews and with their competitors.
"It is perfectly possible to say the same about our national teams - they are good people, ambitious for success and to a man and woman aware of their status as role models."
As well as congratulating Roy Hodgson's England on reaching next summer's World Cup finals in Brazil, the Duke also praised FA chairman Greg Dyke's commission to look into improving the fortunes of the national side.
"I am glad to see that, under the new Chairman and Commission, there is renewed vigour to improve the competitive quality of our national game, for all our sakes," William added.
"But I would also encourage us to make sure we retain sportsmanship at the heart of this energetic drive for success.
"Regrettably, Her Majesty's reign includes only one time that England won the World Cup, but I know that Greg and Roy are trying to make up for lost time now."
With racism remaining a thorny issue in the game, including unsavoury scenes in matches during the week preceding the FA gala, the Duke also praised the work of those attempting to rid football of discrimination.
"I am proud of the work of Kick it Out, which is also celebrating an anniversary - its 20th - this year," said the Prince.
"There is sadly more work to do but it is heartening to see how seriously The FA takes stamping the blight of racism and discrimination out of football."