x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 24 July 2017

Trezeguet hopes to improve UAE football

Ahmed Rizvi

Dubai // David Trezeguet has a World Cup winners' medal and a cabinet overflowing with trophies, but the Frenchman still wants more silverware to add to his collection.

"I know the expectations are high," Trezeguet said. "I have come here to win, to help Baniyas to win the title. I want to show my competency, put in a lot more effort and end the season with a trophy."

Trezeguet, 33, had plenty of offers to stay in Europe, but having heard good things about the UAE league, he wanted to give it a try, and has not been disappointed with what he has seen so far.

"It is a new adventure for me. I have seen a very high level of football being played here. There are some very big players and coaches here, and their arrival will take the league to an even higher level.

"As for choosing the UAE, it is a very advanced country in football and sports in general. I have heard a lot of good stories about the UAE through my colleagues and those who have been here.

"I will try my best to contribute to the improvement of the quality and standards of football in the country."

Trezeguet is one of many stars who have moved home to the UAE. There is Grafite and Luis Jimenez at Al Ahli, Asamoah Gyan and Ignacio Scocco at Al Ain, Lucas Neill at Al Jazira. Many of them have perhaps been influenced by the arrival of Italy's 2006 World Cup-winning captain, Fabio Cannavaro, at Ahli last season.

"Football is the same, whether in the UAE, Europe or South America," said Cannavaro, who has retired from the game now but serves as Ahli's ambassador. "It is about one pitch and one ball. For us players, the important thing is to have a good atmosphere in the team.

"I hope this league becomes much better for everybody because we want to improve the national team. Now we have a lot of big players, good coaches and for us that is very important."