Thu, 28 Oct, 2021
Sao Paulo: AFC President Shaikh Salman Bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa cast his gaze towards a successful future for Asian football as he praised the hard work and dedication shown by Member Associations in restoring the reputation of the Asian Football Confederation.
Shaikh Salman addressed delegates at the AFC Extraordinary Congress on Monday morning in Sao Paulo, heralding the positive changes that have been implemented since the Bahraini was elected to the top post in the continental game in May 2013.
"A little over a year ago, I stood before you at the AFC Congress in Kuala Lumpur having been elected as the 10th President of the Asian Football Confederation," said Shaikh Salman
"It was a challenging time for the confederation, but together we have worked hard towards restoring our reputation. In a spirit of unity, cooperation, respect and constructive discussion, we can continue to take on the tasks we face and look forward to a bright future.
"This future shall be one of success on and off the pitch. And this success shall be achieved in a climate of transparency, integrity and good governance.
"In the short period of time since you placed your confidence and trust in me to lead the confederation, we have already seen a number of positive changes."
Shaikh Salman also announced several new initiatives to help further develop the game in Asia as the confederation seeks to pass on its expertise to Member Associations in a bid to further improve the sport.
"These three new projects have all been designed to support our Member Associations as we continue to work to strengthen our game locally and regionally," said the AFC President.
"These are assistance for building mini-pitches, provide financial assistance to encourage the hosting of AFC national team and futsal qualifiers and to share the AFC's knowledge base with the setup of a pool of experts to help you overcome challenges in administration, management of league marketing etc.
"I am confident that these new initiatives along with other programmes will greatly help Asian Football."
Shaikh Salman called for a continuance of the unity that has been shown within the confederation over the last year as the AFC moves towards further reform and modernisation ahead of next year's AFC Congress.
"We will not rest," said the AFC President. "United, we will continue the process of reform and innovation as we come together here in Brazil to modernise and amend our AFC statutes in compliance with FIFA's as well as to select the members of the Electoral and Election Appeal Committees for next year's election.
"We take these tasks responsibly and in the spirit of transparency and democracy as we continue to take Asian football forward."