FIFA President praises AFC contribution to global game
Bangkok: FIFA President Gianni Infantino praised the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) and the AFC President Shaikh Salman bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa on the progress of Asian football and the Continent’s contribution to the world game.
Attending the AFC Executive Committee meeting in Bangkok, the FIFA President said: “I feel it is a great privilege and great honour to be with you in this Executive Committee. I am a friend of Asia, I feel part of the Asian family and we can see the progress in football in Asia. This is because of the work of your President and all of you in the AFC.
“We can see the results of the co-operation between FIFA and the AFC already as we show the positive spirit of working for football. Like on a football pitch, we have to work together to develop football in Asia and by doing this we can achieve even greater results.
“The AFC should be proud of what you achieve. We have organised all the FIFA events in Asia and everything has been a success. Asia is an important stakeholder for FIFA,” added the FIFA President, who will join the celebration of Asian football at the AFC Annual Awards to be held in the Thai capital on Wednesday.
The AFC President Shaikh Salman said: “It is a privilege to have the FIFA President at the AFC Executive Committee as he is a friend of Asia and I offer him my unconditional support. We have shown our unity since the FIFA Presidential election last year by working extremely closely.
“I think that I can say that the FIFA President has the backing of the football family in Asia as it is felt that he is fair to us and all the Confederations.
“We are proud also of our contribution to FIFA. Asia will have a record five teams at the FIFA World Cup in Russia next year and Asia has staged many FIFA events – the FIFA Congress in Bahrain, the FIFA Under-17 and Under-20 World Cups in India and Korea Republic and the FIFA Club World Cup in the United Arab Emirates.
“I am also delighted at many Asian companies have also supported FIFA with sponsorship in the past few months and years. Asia plays its part in FIFA and will continue to do so in the future for the benefit of the world game.”