Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 2 July 2020

Jorge Luis Pinto ready to 'give everything' to help UAE reach 2022 World Cup

The Football Association announced on Monday that they would push ahead with completing the deal to bring the Colombian to the Emirates

Jorge Luis Pinto during his time as the Honduras national team manager. AFP
Jorge Luis Pinto during his time as the Honduras national team manager. AFP

Jorge Luis Pinto says he will “give everything” to guide the UAE to the 2022 World Cup after he was selected to become the next national team manager.

The Football Association announced on Monday that they would push ahead with completing the deal to bring the Colombian to the Emirates. Pinto, 67, signed a pre-contract agreement late last week.

Should the deal be finalised, he will replace Ivan Jovanovic, who was dismissed in April without having taken charge of a match.

A manager for the best past of the past 36 years, Pinto has international experience with Colombia, Costa Rica and Honduras, and is perhaps best known for leading the Costa Ricans to the 2014 World Cup quarter-finals.

He will be tasked with guiding the UAE to the next global finals, in two years’ time. The country has only once before appeared at a World Cup, in 1990.

Posting on his official Twitter account late on Monday night, in both Spanish and English, Pinto wrote: “We will give everything working very hard to bring UAE to the second world championship in its history, thanks to the president and his managers for trusting, and to all those who in Colombia and the world have been aware #Qatar2022.”

If appointed, Pinto’s first official match will be the rescheduled World Cup qualifier against Malaysia at home on October 8. The UAE then face Indonesia away five days later, before rounding off the second stage of qualification with home matches against Thailand and Vietnam in November.

The fixtures were originally scheduled for March and June, but were postponed because of the coronavirus.

The UAE lie fourth in Group G, five points off leaders Vietnam, although they have a game in hand. Only the group winners are guaranteed to progress to the third round of qualification, alongside the four best runners-up from the eight groups.

Updated: June 30, 2020 10:38 AM

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