Education City Stadium, a jewel of the desert
The AFC Champions League 2020 competitions for the western region of the continent have written a new certificate of success for the State of Qatar in hosting major sporting events, whether at the continental or global level, to add to the previous successes achieved by Doha, and confirms its ability and readiness from now to host the 2022 World Cup. It is held for the first time in the Middle East region, and is nominated to host major tournaments, whether continental or world, at any time.
The AFC Champions League for the West region concluded yesterday, Saturday, with the Iranian Persepolis team qualifying for the final of the continental championship after defeating the Saudi victory in a penalty shootout in the semi-final round, as Qatar hosted the tournament matches during the period from September 14 to October 3, 2020, with the participation of 15 teams representing some of the best The clubs and players are: Al-Sadd and Al-Duhail / Qatar / Persepolis, Sepahan Isfahan, Istiqlal Tehran, Shahr Khodro / Iran / Al-Nasr, Al-Hilal, Al-Ahly and Al-Taawon / Saudi Arabia /, Police / Iraq /, Pakhtakor / Uzbekistan /, Al-Ain, Sharjah and Shabab Al-Ahly Dubai / Emirates /, while Al-Wehda apologized The Emirati team stopped participating before the tournament began due to the infection of some of its players with the new Corona virus (Covid-19).
The Local Organizing Committee, in cooperation with the AFC and the Ministries of Health and Interior, implemented the necessary precautionary measures to maintain the safety of everyone, throughout the tournament, which Qatar contributed to completing its matches after it stopped last March due to the Corona pandemic.
The committees working in the tournament made a great effort to come out with the championship competitions with the ideal organization that befits the name of the State of Qatar, which used to host continental and Gulf championships on a global basis, which was confirmed by the AFC Champions League to add a new achievement on the way to hosting the 2022 FIFA World Cup Qatar, where the local committee allocated A number of committees for the success of the championship, including the Public Relations Committee, the Security Committee, the Competitions Committee, the Operations and Facilities Committee, the Marketing Committee and others, which confirms the concern for the success of the continental event.
The clubs participating in the AFC Champions League 2020 had an exceptional opportunity to experience the stadiums and facilities of the World Cup Qatar 2022, as the tournament matches were held on four stadiums, including three dedicated to World Cup matches: Khalifa International Stadium, Al Janoub Stadium, and Education City Stadium, while the fourth stadium was a stadium. Jassim bin Hamad at Al Sadd Sports Club, which has the technology of cooling technology.
The players participating in the competitions had a unique experience by living the atmosphere of the World Cup two years before the hosting of the global event in Doha, the capital of world sports, and they also had the opportunity to play on the World Cup stadiums at full operational capacity, especially since it is the first time that the AFC Champions League matches are held in a group and on the World Cup stadium It is also air-conditioned with the availability of cooling technology, which made the players, regulators and officials of the AFC live an exceptional and unique experience.
Playing the championship matches on stadiums characterized by cooling technology through innovative and advanced equipment was a very special thing in the tournament, and it was an exceptional experience for everyone, as the temperature at that time reached 39 degrees Celsius at the time of the matches, but it was in the stadium up to 22-24 degrees Celsius, and thus the matches were held in an ideal atmosphere, which helped the players to present their best and this was reflected through the levels presented by the teams and also the emergence of more than one star in the tournament.
Also, one of the advantages of the tournament, which the players enjoyed, is that they go through the training grounds for 2022 national teams, where 15 clubs have trained in three training sites: the dispatch complex, the Uqla complex, the training grounds at Qatar University /, and each of the training sites included two stadiums on the ground Of natural grass and a lighting system, in addition to changing rooms for players and coaches, a gym for fitness and rehabilitation, rooms for first aid and equipment for media and broadcasting, a hall for press conferences, a hall for guests and rest, etc., and communication and information technology networks, which gave players the opportunity to train in modern facilities compatible with International Federation of Football Association (FIFA) standards.
It is scheduled that the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 will witness the presence of 41 training sites, as each of the training sites includes two stadiums with a natural grass floor and a lighting system according to FIFA standards, facilities for the participating teams, and places for the public to attend the available training sessions. For fans, and others.
The other experience that the clubs participating in the AFC Champions League 2020 for the western region of the continent have benefited from is the close-distance nature that the Qatar 2022 World Cup will witness, to provide an exceptional experience for the first time in the history of the tournament. Moving from hotels to training stadiums or tournament stadiums, and focusing more on training and preparing for matches, as players, administrative and technical agencies and official delegations accompanying the clubs did not have to shift from one city to another to participate in the matches. The experience that players and fans will have during the World Cup in Qatar.
Qatar’s hosting of the tournament came to be one of the important tests for Qatar 2022 facilities and raising the level of preparation for the tournament more than two years before the most prominent event in the world, by testing the readiness of the tournament stadiums, facilities, training sites, operations, committees and working cadres, standing on all equipment and gaining great experience through the cadres The distinguished Qatari country that has proven its worth in this tournament, as the tournament provided the opportunity to host a large number of matches in a short period of time in all the tournament stadiums.
Throughout the holding of the AFC Champions League 2020, the AFC has been keen to pay tribute to the State of Qatar for the great efforts it has made to host this exceptional edition, as Sheikh Salman bin Ibrahim Al Khalifa, President of the AFC, the First Vice President of FIFA, Thanks to the Qatari government, the Qatari Federation, and all concerned authorities in the country, for hosting the tournament matches with this high level of professionalism, which guarantees a safe return to the competitions of this ancient tournament at the level of continental clubs, and to ensure the return of the matches in an atmosphere that guarantees the safety of all.
The representatives of the AFC also confirmed Qatar’s organizational capabilities through a symposium through visual communication to discuss the precautionary measures taken by the State of Qatar during its hosting of the continental championship competitions in a safe atmosphere, and the lessons learned from this experience in organizing major sporting events in light of the Corona pandemic, as Qatar has demonstrated. The world has the possibility of a safe return to football competitions, in light of its success in hosting a championship of this weight in light of the current Corona crisis, and its handling of positive cases in a fast and safe manner, so that the AFC’s confidence in the possibility of returning the qualifying matches for the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 / The Qatari experience in hosting the AFC Champions League for the Western Continent is a pivotal aspect of these efforts.
Club players and coaches also praised the organizational capabilities of the State of Qatar and the sports facilities and infrastructure that it owns, as they confirmed from now on Qatar’s readiness to organize an exceptional FIFA World Cup.
The local organizing committee for the 2020 AFC Champions League, in cooperation with the Qatar Football Association, the Supreme Committee for Delivery and Legacy, the Qatar Stars League, and all partners in Qatar, worked to ensure the safety of all participants by taking a number of strict preventive measures throughout the tournament, and the precautionary measures taken included both The mandatory quarantine of participants and organizers, the use of safe transportation, the reduction of the number of individuals inside the stadiums, the regular sterilization of all championship stadiums, training sites, and media facilities, in addition to the allocation of medical teams throughout the period of competitions held without public attendance, as part of the commitment of all parties to The gradual and safe return of international football activities across Asia.
The organizing committee was also keen to conduct a periodic examination in cooperation with the Ministry of Health, as more than 7900 examinations were conducted for all the players, the equipment of the participating teams, the organizers and members of the local committee organizing the tournament, and the percentage of positive cases did not exceed 1.7%, and all participants were entered into a health isolation department to maintain Their safety.
Officials of the local organizing committee unanimously agreed that the 2020 AFC Champions League competitions would be eliminated in the western region of the continent in a global organizational fashion, as Hassan Rabi’a Al-Kuwari, Director of Marketing Department at the tournament, confirmed that the competitions hosted by Doha appeared distinctly from both technical and organizational aspects, pointing to Qatar’s distinction and success in hosting the most prominent Major world events.
Al-Kuwari thanked all the parties that participated in Qatar’s successful hosting of the AFC Champions League, and their tremendous efforts to ensure the safety of all participants, especially front-line workers who played a vital role in ensuring that all participants in the tournament get the support and assistance they need, noting that this copy is The year of the continental championship will not be forgotten from everyone’s memory, especially since it is the first time that the gathering system is held and on stadiums and facilities designated for the Qatar 2022 World Cup, which was evident from the satisfaction of all participants in the tournament, whether delegations or AFC officials.
And he considered that this tournament has achieved many benefits, both for the AFC and the participating teams, as the Qatari hosting contributed to saving the championship after it was stopped due to the Corona pandemic, which was difficult for any other country to do, especially in light of these difficult circumstances the world is going through, but Qatar overcame all obstacles and challenges and proved to the world that the 2022 World Cup will be an unforgettable version.
In his turn, Major General Abdulaziz Al-Ansari, Chairman of the Security and Safety Operations Committee for the World Cup / Qatar 2022 /, affirmed the committee’s keenness to give the security of the tournaments organized by the state of utmost importance based on the important and decisive role of security in such tournaments, which are considered an actual test within the framework of Qatar’s preparations to host The World Cup, pointing out that the committee, since the announcement of hosting the 2020 AFC Champions League for West Asia, has been keen to provide all capabilities and harness them to enhance security work.
Al-Ansari explained that working teams were formed from the committee’s units to undertake the tasks entrusted to them in providing the necessary protection and maintaining security and order throughout the Asian championship period, indicating that the security work system during the tournament, which included all concerned parties, worked in perfect harmony and harmony according to security plans and strategies. Designed to secure this event as required.
Lt. Col. Khalifa Shaheen Al-Dossary, security commander for the AFC Champions League 2020 for West Asia, confirmed that the security effort exerted during the tournament contributed to providing the ideal atmosphere for its success, indicating that five operating rooms were allocated to carry out security tasks in each of (Al Janoub Stadium, Khalifa Stadium. Education City Stadium, Al Sadd Stadium, Sheraton Hotel), in addition to the tournament command center operations room, in addition to the fact that the security authorities in charge played their roles in the required manner in securing the entrances and exits of stadiums and training sites, and places of residence for the missions participating in the tournament, and also strengthening the monitoring and control mechanisms In prohibited materials and actions, and carrying out inspection procedures and security surveys of people and vehicles, using the best advanced technological means and devices.
For his part, Nasser Al-Khater, CEO of the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022, considered that Qatar’s hosting of the 2020 AFC Champions League for West Asia was a great opportunity for us to experience the facilities and stadiums of the Qatar 2022 tournament, which will be held for the first time in the Middle East region. .
Al-Khater said that the operational capabilities of the stadiums on which the matches were held were tested, and the cooling technology was tested that worked efficiently and contributed to the holding of the competitions in an ideal atmosphere, as well as the training grounds for the 2022 World Cup Qatar, which were set up in 3 training sites that served as modern facilities that correspond to With FIFA standards, in addition to testing all tournament facilities, hotels and transportation, the tournament also witnessed an unforgettable experience for players and technical equipment by playing a close-range tournament, which will provide an exceptional experience for the teams and fans in the Qatar 2022 World Cup.
He added that the AFC Champions League is one of the most prominent competitions in the Asian continent, as it includes an elite group of clubs and distinguished players, and we are happy to host and support this tournament at this difficult time in light of the Corona pandemic that caused the tournament to be suspended since last March.
The CEO of the Qatar 2022 World Cup said that the tournament was also an opportunity to develop the capabilities of the cadres working in this tournament and gain new experiences by dealing with all challenges, and this tournament adds more experiences to our cadres, which always confirms its merit through the great work done by all the championship committees, He pointed out that Qatar provided high standards of health care to all the teams participating in the tournament, by applying all precautionary measures and preventive measures and adhering to continuous medical examination to preserve the safety of all players, technical and administrative equipment, referees and workers in the tournament, in cooperation with our partners.
Al-Khater thanked all the committees and partners who worked throughout the tournament, in light of the current circumstances and challenges.
For his part, Hani Ballan, Vice Chairman of the Referees Committee of the Asian Football Confederation and Chairman of the Referees Committee of the Qatari Federation, praised the organizational level with which the AFC Champions League 2020 competition for the Western Continent, hosted by Doha during the last period, came out, which confirms that Qatar won the bet in Organizing the continental event in light of the difficult conditions that the world is currently experiencing due to the Corona pandemic.
Blanc said that the local organizing committee of the tournament was keen to provide all the needs of both clubs and AFC officials, as it made great efforts to preserve the health and safety of everyone, which is something that is counted for Qatar, which has been trying to overcome the difficulties in any tournament it hosts, especially in this tournament that comes under circumstances Exceptional, noting that the AFC was keen to implement the regulations through the decisions made by the AFC Disciplinary and Ethics Committee.
The Vice President of the AFC Referees Committee expressed his happiness with the level of the referees in the tournament after they presented good levels in general, noting that the AFC was keen to apply the video assistant referee (VAR) technology for the first time in the tournament’s history, starting from the quarter-finals, where it represents the use of This technology is a quantum leap for the continental championship from Qatar.
Blan noted the holding of the tournament matches on air-conditioned stadiums, including three stadiums that will host the 2022 World Cup, which greatly helped in the success of the tournament, especially since the facilities were at the highest level, which confirms their great readiness to host the 2022 World Cup, pointing to the great praise that Qatar received from The AFC has emphasized the distinctive organization of the tournament despite the challenges it faced, as the efforts of the Qatari Federation, the Qatar Stars League Foundation, the Supreme Committee for Delivery and Legacy, the Ministries of Health and Interior, in cooperation with the AFC and all the championship committees, contributed to the success of this great event, in which 15 clubs from the region participated. west Asia.
As for Mansour Al-Ansari, Secretary General of the Qatar Football Association, he praised the great success of the 2020 AFC Champions League, one of the major tournaments of the AFC, which was a great opportunity for Asian club teams to play at FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 stadiums, thanking the local organizing committee that emerged From the family of Qatari football and many concerned authorities in the country, which worked uniquely with the AFC, which brought out the tournament in an exemplary form after Qatar hosted 15 teams from the West Asian federations, and provided all services to them according to the highest required standards, as the coordination meetings were Continuous link between the local organizing committee and the AFC.
Al-Ansari stressed that despite the exceptional circumstances in which the championship was held, it witnessed the concerted efforts of all efforts and the solidarity of everyone to come out in the best organizational form, which is what actually happened, and the championship culminated with brilliant success in a new sign of the wonderful organizational capabilities of Qatar, so that the championship is an approved certificate of success and a mini rehearsal. For the 2022 World Cup, pointing out that the local organizing committee was up to the responsibility, as integration and harmony was the main feature between the organizing committee and the AFC team, which consisted of several bodies: the Ministry of Culture and Sports, the Ministry of Interior represented in some concerned departments, the Olympic Committee , Supreme Committee for Delivery and Legacy, Qatar Football Association, Qatar Stars League, Aspire, and Aspetar.
The Secretary-General of the Qatar Federation stated that the tournament has gained, due to its magnitude as a sporting event, an added importance due to the circumstances imposed by the Corona virus, which confirms the ability of football to unite people after the epidemic, considering that the organizational success of the tournament demonstrated the position of Qatar as a global destination for sports and its main supportive role for institutions. In international sports, following the suspension of the AFC Champions League competitions to the west of the continent last March due to the spread of the Corona virus, the State of Qatar took the initiative to support the AFC in hosting the tournament matches from the group stage to the semi-finals, in light of the gradual return of football activity around the world.