x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 28 July 2017

UAE U20 coach praises country's bids for youth World Cups

Eid Baroot believes good times are ahead for the Emirates, both as an international venue and the growing reputation of the national team's youth team players.

ABU DHABI // The country's football community believes the UAE has scored another important goal in bidding for three World Cup tournaments.

The Emirates has submitted bids to stage the men's Under 20 and Under 17 World Cups in 2013 and the women's Under 17 competition in 2014.

Eid Baroot, the coach of the UAE Under 20 team, said: "It goes to show the country is ready and willing to stage Fifa's high-profile events.

"Such events will not only create awareness among the Emirati youth but encourage them to work hard to achieve bigger objectives. It is also a positive step for the region and establishes football is growing in this part of the world."

Josef Hickersberger, the coach of the Pro League champions Al Wahda, believes the country could be successful in the bids.

"I don't see any reason why the UAE cannot be staging them," he said. "The national team has done very well in the age group world cups, and they have also successfully staged the Club World Cup for two successive years, and the Under 20 World Cup in 2003.

"They have the infrastructure and the organising acumen to handle these events. The UAE is also a safe place and the region is really focused in developing the sport. Qatar's successful bid to host the World Cup in 2022 is also a big boon for the region."

The UAE and Ghana are the two bidders for the U17 World Cup. They are joined by Turkey and Uzbekistan in the bid for the U20 World Cup.

The UAE are bidding for the U17 women's World Cup along with Costa Rica, Ghana, Macedonia, Russia and Uzbekistan.

Juma Rabee, the coach of the U16 national team that was beaten by Australia in the Asian Cup last year, said: "The UAE will not bid if they can't handle an event. I can only wish them well in their bidding, and needless to say that they will do a wonderful job in making the event a successful one."

apassela@thenational.ae