x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 28 July 2017

England and Brazil to play friendly in Qatar

England and Brazil will meet in an international friendly in Doha in November, the Football Association announces.

England, who have qualified for the 2010 World Cup in South Africa, will play Brazil in Qatar.
England, who have qualified for the 2010 World Cup in South Africa, will play Brazil in Qatar.

Football fans in the Gulf will get the chance to see the likes of Wayne Rooney, Steven Gerrard and Kaka in action after an agreement to bring England and Brazil to the Middle East for a friendly game was rubber-stamped. Reports that a match would take place between Fabio Capello's side and the five-time world champions in Qatar on November 14 first surfaced at the start of this year, but negotiations were protracted. The showpiece encounter at the Khalifa International Stadium in Doha is part of an agreement between the twonations that originated when Brazil played England in the first game at the new Wembley Stadium in 2007. It will allow both sides to assess their World Cup credentials. Capello said: "To play a team like Brazil will be important for us. We can understand more about ourselves and the level we must reach by playing the best teams. We have played Spain, Holland, Germany and France, some of the best teams in the world. In each of these games we have also played away from home, which is importantbefore South Africa."

The UAE will also host a high-profile game just two days earlier when Manchester City take on the national team in a friendly at the Zayed Stadium in Abu Dhabi. The Premier League club will be in the capital for a training camp, but could lose Robinho, Gareth Barry, Joleon Lescott and Shaun Wright-Phillips if they are called up for the international in Qatar. That will be disappointing news for fans in the Emirates but Garry Cook, City's executive chairman, has said they will be asking the national federations to allow their players to take part in the game against the UAE.

akhan@thenational.ae