By Salma Awwad
Thursday, 27 June 2013
Tickets for the FIFA U-17 World Cup UAE 2013, which will be the biggest football event ever staged in the Middle East when it begins on October 17, went on sale on Thursday, officials said.
The fifteenth FIFA U-17 World Cup, which takes place from October 17 to November 8, is the largest football event ever held in the emirates and one of the world’s biggest international tournaments.
This is first year the UAE has won the bid to host the event, after the United States failed to qualify, despite appearing in all fourteen previous tournaments.
This biennial FIFA tournament has catapulted many of today’s football stars to fame, such as Ronaldinho from Brazil, Luis Figo from Portugal and Italy’s Del Piero.
“I am looking forward to seeing huge support for the tournament across the UAE. Fans around the world should secure their match tickets and get behind their team! This tournament has been the birthplace for many of the legends we see in the game today, so we can definitely expect to see some spectacular football,” said Emirati footballer Omar Abdulrahman, who was named ‘Player of the Year’ at the recent end of season awards and has been appointed the official tournament ambassador.
“This is a region that is crazy about football and with the best 24 U-17 teams in the world finally coming together to compete for the trophy, I am confident that tickets will sell fast,” said the 21-year old player.
Less than four months are left until the first day of 52 matches begins.
The tournament will be played across five of the Emirates of the UAE, over a three week period in six of the UAE’s top stadiums – Mohammed Bin Zayed Stadium in Abu Dhabi, Emirates Stadium in Ras Al Khaimah, Fujairah Stadium in Fujairah, Sharjah Stadium in Sharjah, Rashid Stadium in Dubai and Khalifa Bin Zayed Stadium, Al Ain.
FIFA U-17 World Cup UAE 2013 Qualified Nations are: Japan, Iran, Iraq, Uzbekistan, UAE, Ivory Coast, Morocco, Nigeria, Tunisia, Russia, Italy, Sweden, Slovakia, Austria, Croatia, Canada, Honduras, Panama, Mexico, New Zealand, Argentina, Brazil, Venezuela and Uruguay.
Dubai has committed to hosting various youth events in the future including the fourth International Swimming Federation (FINA) world junior swimming competition in August this year and the 2014 men’s Under-17 Basketball World Championship (FIBA).
Tickets can be bought on FIFA’s official website and start from AED35 ($9.52). The FIFA U-17 world Cup UAE 2013 Official Draw will take place on August 26, when single match tickets will also go on sale.
Source: Arabian Business.