'Deep football roots' in Middle East - Qatari 2022 Secretary14/07/2014 from：SNTV
The Secretary General of the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, Hassan al Thawadi, spoke to SNTV on Sunday (13th July) about the progress being made in the country - and his expectations ahead of the tournament.
"The people in the Middle East are passionate about football, sports, but football in particular. It runs deep down our roots. It's provides an opportunity to bridge cultural gaps, bridge cultural differences. It provides an opportunity for us to leave aside the cultural differences and actually get to together on a common platform, which is our support and love for the sport. That is essential. I believe every major event in the world today, whether it's the Olympics or the World Cup, the two biggest sporting events, to actually leave a legacy of bridging cultural gaps is the ultimate goal that any event can have and achieve. Today it's very, very possible in the World Cup in the Middle East in 2022."
"There's always an assumption of obstacles, significant obstacles and an unlikely ability to deliver. We've seen it in Brazil, in South Africa, we saw it at London 2012 as well. Each of these events have proven the critics wrong. From our side I'm sure there are a lot of preconceptions, significant ones all around. I'd rather not feed into them, what I'd rather say is this: the World Cup in Qatar is a World Cup that represents the Middle East and the Arab nation, as well as Asia. It is the second World Cup an Asia and the first in west Asia, the Middle East and the Arab nation. We've seen the success the World Cup has had when held in new regions. We've seen it in east Asia in Japan and South Korea, we've seen it with the success in 1994 within the US and we will see the success in the Middle East in 2022."
- Third place