The Asian Football Confederation (AFC), the United Arab Emirates Football Association (UAEFA) and the Abu Dhabi Sports Council (ADSC) on Tuesday, July 19 signed a landmark agreement to host the 2016 AFC Annual Awards Night ceremony at the Emirates Palace Hotel in Abu Dhabi on December 1 this year.
AFC General Secretary Dato’ Windsor John and UAEFA General Secretary Mohammed Hazzam Al Dhaheri put pen to paper on behalf of the respective organisations.
It was decided in March 2016 at the AFC’s Executive Committee (ExCo) meeting in Kuala Lumpur to name the UAE capital as host city for the 2016 AFC Annual Awards ceremony.
Expressing his delight at Abu Dhabi being chosen as the venue for the Annual Awards, AFC President Shaikh Salman bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa said, “The AFC Annual Awards Night is the most prestigious celebration in our yearly calendar and represents the pinnacle of our continent’s achievements.”
“Football has grown enormously to command a dominant place in UAE and we are extremely pleased to hold this year’s Annual Awards in the wonderful city of Abu Dhabi.”
“On behalf of the AFC and the Asian football family, I would like to thank the Abu Dhabi Sports Council and the UAE FA for their exceptional support and I am confident we will witness a glorious night as we celebrate the continent’s best talent.”
His Excellency Aref Hamad Al Awani, ADSC General Secretary conveyed his appreciation to the AFC President and ExCo for their trust in Abu Dhabi, “It is really great for us to sign this agreement with the AFC to host the 2016 Awards Night.”
“Hosting the 2016 Awards Night will have positive effects on UAE football and is another addition to UAE sports which will further enhance Abu Dhabi’s position as a capital for international sport events.”
UAEFA President His Excellency Marwan Ahmad Bin Ghalita said the UAE has always been at the forefront of hosting high-profile international events.
“I would like to thank the AFC President for showing the confederation’s trust in the UAE’s abilities to host this big event in the Asian football calendar. I am confident that the stakeholders will witness a world-class show on December 1 in Abu Dhabi.”
This is the second time that the AFC Annual Awards ceremony will be hosted in Abu Dhabi. The first time was in 2006 and it was the first time the event had been held outside Kuala Lumpur, which is home to the AFC Headquarters. The AFC’s 2015 Annual Awards were held in the Indian capital New Delhi to wide critical acclaim.