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FC Barcelona coach, Josep Guardiola, is to become an ambassador for the Qatar 2022 Bid.

Guardiola, whose team won the 2009 UEFA Champions League, spent two years playing for Qatar’s Al Ahli Club, and recently returned to the country after leading his team to the FIFA Club World Cup title in the UAE’s Abu Dhabi, the sixth trophy of an historic season.

“I am very pleased to be representing Qatar’s 2022 World Cup Bid,” Guardiola said upon his appointment. “I believe this is a truly unique bid, and a wonderful opportunity to spread the magic and the benefits of the world’s favourite game across the globe.”

“Having played in Qatar myself between 2003 and 2005, and having grown to love the country and greatly appreciate Qatar’s football development and infrastructure investment, I believe the time is ripe for the first World Cup to be held in the Middle East. My experience in Qatar, as well as the outstanding organization and football passion we witnessed in the UAE during the Clubs World Cup, makes me confident that Qatar and the Middle East can host a spectacular, passionate and unforgettable World Cup that embraces all the FIFA ideals.”

As a Bid ambassador, Guardiola will be attending events to voice his support for Qatar’s World Cup ambitions, as well as giving the leadership technical advice on staging the world’s biggest tournament. He joins a high profile list of Bid ambassadors including the World Cup legends Gabriel Batistuta, Ronald De Boer, Roger Milla, Sami Al Jaber and Bora Milutinovic.

Qatar’s Bid Committee CEO, Hassan Abdulla Al Thawadi, welcomed Guardiola onto the Qatar 2022 team and hailed his recent achievements with FC Barcelona as well as his commitment to youth development. “We are honored to work together with Josep to bring the World Cup to Qatar in 2022. Both as a player and as a coach he has been the personification of dedication and passion on the football pitch,” Al Thawadi said.

“More than any of his astonishing successes, though, we are delighted to have him on our team because of his continued commitment to youth development in football. As the coach of FC Barcelona, he has won every title with a team based on Barcelona youth academy players, a philosophy we are most familiar with from his time helping youth development here in Qatar.”

Qatar are battling with England, USA, South Korea, Australia, Russia, Indonesia and Japan for 2022 as well as joint bids from Spain and Portugal and Netherlands and Belgium.


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