The Asean Football Federation (AFF) announced the signing of a five-year Cooperation Agreement with the Qatar Football Association (QFA), Aspire Zone Foundation (AZF) and the International Centre for Sport Security (ICSS) here today.

This historic agreement will pave the way for the signatories to strategically collaborate in various areas including but not limited to management, competition, technical, sports science and sports medicine.

AZF includes the Aspire Academy and the Aspetar Orthopaedic and Sports Medicine Hospital while the ICSS offers expert strategic advice across all areas of sport and venue safety and security. Both the AZF and ICSS are Qatar-based organisations.

Today’s signing ceremony was attended by AFF President, Major General Khiev Sameth, FIFA Council Member and AFC Senior Vice-President, Mr Saoud Abdul Aziz Al-Mohannadi, FIFA Council Member, Mr Mariano V. Araneta Jr., AFF Vice-President, Dato’ Sri Francisco Kalbuadi Lay, AFF Council Member, Mr Viphet Sihachakr, AFF General Secretary, Mr Winston Lee and Qatar FA General Secretary, Mr Mansoor Mohammed Al-Ansari.

This agreement reflects AFF’s commitment, following the election of Major General Sameth as AFF President in March this year, to further develop and promote Asean football. “The football industry is evolving rapidly and it is crucial we embrace changes to stay relevant and be successful. This strategic partnership provides benefits for AFF and all its Member Associations to raise their game to a higher playing field,” commented Major General Sameth today. 

He said AFF is committed to helping its Member Associations accelerate their progress and development, and such a partnership would contribute to this growth. “This agreement will provide our members access to our new partners’ expertise and knowledge.  We will develop an annual work plan with QFA, AZF and ICSS to operationalise and optimise this strategic partnership. We are looking forward to this collaboration and are confident our members will benefit from this partnership.”

Meanwhile, with QFA hosting the FIFA World Cup in 2022, and Asean considering a bid in 2034, this agreement will provide insight and knowledge to AFF as it works on the bid process. “QFA has successfully won the bid to host the World Cup and we would like to tap on their expertise in this area too,” added Major General Sameth.

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