Determined to make the 2013 UAE FIFA Under-17 World Cup a spectacle, the Local Organising Committee (LOC) in Al-Ain has been given the carte-blanche to bring as many fans as possible to watch the matches here.
Al-Ain, the host city of teams in Group F comprising Nigeria, Sweden, Mexico and Iraq; is under the Abu Dhabi Emirate and the LOC here has reportedly enjoyed the support of His Highness, Mohammed bin Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan -the Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and deputy supreme commander of the UAE Armed Forces.
This much was disclosed by the Al-Ain LOC Venue manager, Ahmed Woldghamail even as he revealed that the organisers would be providing not less than 10 buses to convey Nigerian fans particularly from Dubai to watch the all important Group F opening match between Nigeria and Mexico on Saturday.
“We want to have as many fans as possible in the stadium for all the matches and we are making arrangements to bring Nigerian fans who are many in Dubai to come and watch the Golden Eaglets and we have the blessings of the Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi,” said the amiable Ahmed, a retired referee who has been a frequent traveller to Nigeria since 1998.
“Of course, I have been receiving many calls from my friends in Nigeria who are asking about the welfare of your team; and obviously, Nigerians are expecting so much.”
The LOC arrangement is aside the arrangement being made by the Nigeria’s Embassy in Abu Dhabi to bring as many as possible Nigerians to the stadium on Saturday.
In a related development, Nigeria’s Team Liaison Officer, Mr. Seth Amoafo, a Ghanaian is hopeful that the Black Stars’ 6-1 thrashing of Egypt in Tuesday’s 2014 World Cup qualifier is a good omen for Nigeria.
Amoafo has been of valuable assistance to the Golden Eaglets and he brings so much passion to his job alongside his colleague from the LOC, Mr. Almahmoud Humaid.
“Of course, the Black Stars’ victory is a sign of positive thing,” said Amoafo, a coach with Royal Football Academy in Abu Dhabi at the team’s training session. “I enjoyed the training and I like the excitement amongst the players.”