Preparatory meetings of the Arab Gulf Cup Football Federation continued on hosting the Gulf Cup 25 championship and the organizational and coordination aspects related to the Federation’s work. A meeting of the Executive Committee was held today, Tuesday, at the Federation’s headquarters in Burj Al-Bidaa in the Qatari capital, Doha, chaired by Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa bin Ahmed Al-Thani, President of the Federation. Also in attendance were his deputy, Dr. Jassim bin Muhammad Al-Shukaily, “Oman”, and the members Hamid Al-Shaibani “Yemen”, Shamil Kamel “Iraq”, and Adel Abdullah Batti “Saudi Arabia” who registered his attendance through visual communication technology. Jassem Al-Rumaihi, Secretary-General of the Union, and Ahmed Al-Nuaimi, Assistant Secretary-General, discussed the topics on its agenda which included the committees’ reports, approval of the minutes of the previous meeting and new tasks. It is expected that the Executive Committee will hold its next meeting in January.
After the meeting, Dr. Jassim bin Muhammad Al-Shukaily, Vice-President of the Federation, made a statement in which he said: “We discussed in today’s meeting the reports of the committees which included a number of observations and recommendations related to developing work in the Union and enhancing its readiness at various levels. Also during the meeting, decisions were postponed on some issues. They were put forward for consideration at the next meeting of the committee.”
Regarding the bid to host the Gulf Cup 25, Al-Shukaily explained that the only association that applied to host the tournament is the Iraqi Federation. Due to the Corona pandemic, consideration of the file they submitted was postponed, but praise be to God, the evaluation committee was able to look into the file and discuss the data and information it contained yesterday and the previous day. Regarding Iraq’s readiness to host the tournament and the size of these preparations, and as a result, a working group was formed to conduct an inspection visit to Iraq during the next phase. It aims to see the extent of conformity with what was included in the presented file on the ground, the level of the facilities that will host the competitions, places of residence of delegations and other aspects that would contribute to the establishment of a successful tournament.
After the visit, the report of the formed working group will be reviewed and carefully studied. Thereafter, the details of this topic will be announced.
Al-Shukaily added, “We all hope that the team that will visit Iraq will produce good results in favor of the Iraqi file.” He emphasized that the federation is ready for any other possibilities regarding the upcoming hosting in the event that the team’s report is not in the interest of Iraq hosting the Gulf Cup 25 tournament to be held between December 2021 and January 2022. An alternative file was submitted by the Qatar Football Association in case the main file submitted by Iraq is not able to fulfill the requirements for hosting and the criteria for its establishment.
He concluded: “There is consensus that Iraq will host the next tournament, but this matter will remain dependent on Iraq’s readiness, which we hope will be an incubator for this Gulf union, God willing.”