Friday Jun 01 2018

New football federation to feature teams from South, West Asia

13-Football nations from South Asia and West Asia have agreed to form a new regional federation for Football, the South West Asian Football Federation.

The inaugural meeting of SWAFF was held in Jeddah on Thursday to formally establish this new body.

“Presidents of football federations in South and West Asia met in Jeddah Thursday with a senior FIFA official attending as an observer to start the formal process of establishing a new body for football to be known as the South West Asian Football Federation,” said a statement from SWAFF secretariat.

The meeting was attended by Pakistan, Sri Lanka, India, Nepal, Bangladesh, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Maldives, Yemen, Oman, Kuwait, and United Arab Emirates.

The new organisation, according to the statement, has been designed to improve the quality of football for people of all ages, genders and levels of ability in the region.

Faisal Saleh Hayat, the president of Pakistan Football Federation hailed the formation adding that it will help Pakistan football grow further.

“The initiative of SWAFF is a milestone in the development of football in Pakistan and other nations. There is no doubt it is a new frontier of football,” said Makhdoom Faisal Hayat, president of the Pakistan Football Federation.

The new body plans to work with partners, governments, federations and other interested parties in the region to establish new football facilities, academies, and competitions, which will be developed in harmony and in collaboration with FIFA, AFC, and Football Federations within South and West Asia, and within existing football structures, schedules and commitments.

“When we spoke about governance, FIFA is really supporting and encouraging such initiatives, Fifa President Gianni Infantino himself has welcomed the initiative,” said Abdulla Aljunaibi, vice-president of the UAE football federation.

Funds from new football events and commercial programs will be reinvested into football development to help create a new football sector and culture in member nations that is self-sufficient and fully transparent.

Another statement on organisation’s website states that The South West Asian Football Federation (SWAFF) will be a new member association in world football working collaboratively and in harmony with FIFA and AFC and in parallel with existing regional football federations in the region.