ABU DHABI // Manchester City Football Club is launching a new Arabic version of the team's website today. The club's popular page, www.mcfc.co.uk, is undergoing a complete makeover and from midday today will offer bilingual content to satisfy the demand from its growing army of Middle East supporters. Pages from the site will also carry a question-and-answer session with the club's owner, Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed, in which he will pledge his commitment to the club and explain his motivation for buying it in September.
The site's look has also been completely overhauled and the Chinese version has been dropped. Designers have scrapped display advertising to avoid cluttering the website, and promise it will be filled with extra video content, including free match highlights and extracts of team news conferences. The decision to add an Arabic-language version came from the club's chairman, Khaldoon al Mubarak, and aims to boost the club's fan base in the Middle East.
"He recognised that if the club was to build its number of international supporters, it would need to have a cutting-edge internet presence," said David Pullan, the brand and marketing officer for the club. A separate UAE-hosted website, www.manchestercityfc.ae, will be launched simultaneously to provide club news for fans based in the Emirates. Fans can view training-ground reports and extra match-day statistics. The launch coincides with the first day supporters can preorder versions of the team's home strip, which will go on sale on July 18.