Visiting players and coaches of teams appearing in the AFC Champions League East Zone matches have praised the Local Organization Committee (LOC) for the manner in which it is hosting the month-long tournament.
Boasting a remarkable track record of hosting major championships; Qatar, once again managed to impress through meticulous organization and class-leading facilities, here are comments of the coaches and players who have felt at home while playing matches on Qatar soil since November 18. The AFC Champions League 2020 will end on December 19 when Doha stages the final.
Portuguese coach Vitor Pereira, coach of the Chinese team Shanghai SIPG, said:
"The stadiums are more than extraordinary and look distinctive. The facilities are excellent as well and meet the highest international standards. Qatar is doing a tremendous job by building stunning stadiums and training venues. What's more, they are available to teams from all parts of the world".
"The Covid 19 virus is a global epidemic and must be confronted with great responsibility, and this is the new reality in the world with football also. The LOC is doing a wonderful job of protecting us and everybody else during this tournament. We are delighted with the Qatari organization who have put in place strict health and safety measures."
Shanghai SIPG's Brazilian star Hulk said:
"Al Janoub Stadium is one of the most amazing stadiums in the world. I think that Qatar is doing a great job hosting this event and has amazing stadiums. We are lucky to play at Al Janoub Stadium, one of the most beautiful stadiums in the world, in my opinion. Indeed, Qatar is ready to host the 2022 FIFA World Cup. Qatar is more than wonderful in all respects, especially in terms of providing safety for players and everyone related to this tournament. The security and safety measures are top-notch. I hope that no one will be infected with the Corona pandemic after the end of the tournament."
Ange Postecoglou, coach of Yokohama F Marinos, said:
"The stadiums are impressive, the organization is excellent, and Qatar has done everything perfectly. We are experiencing a new atmosphere in football, and security and safety remain top issues for any LOC. The LOC in Qatar has been very keen on protecting us since we arrived a few days ago. I have to say from an organizational point of view, Qatar is facing the Corona epidemic with full force and planning to keep everyone safe.
"Qatar will organize a wonderful tournament in the 2022 World Cup, I feel. It has been planning successfully for some time to host major sports events. It has succeeded in that with distinction. In this tournament, there are many international players who will participate with their teams in the next FIFA World Cup in Qatar, and it is an opportunity for them to know what to expect in 2022."
Portuguese Jose Manuel Ferreira de Morais, in charge of South Korean club Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors, said:
"There is a strong reaction here in Qatar to counter the situation in which the world lives. The LOC carries out important precautionary measures concerning the security and safety of everyone involved. Of course, I respect everyone's concern about this pandemic, but here in Qatar, we have all means of prevention available through the strict "health bubble" created in Doha. Sometimes I think it affects the mentality of the players, but security and safety remain the first priority for every LOC, and it is the same here in Qatar".
"I congratulate Qatar for the outstanding services it is doing in terms of offering their amazing facilities on the way to hosting many top tournaments. The Qatari organizational abilities are truly amazing, and since my arrival, I have been impressed with all the efforts. The Qatari people are hospitable, friendly and support everyone. I feel the 2022 FIFA World Cup will undoubtedly be successful. I congratulate Qatar and the Qatari people once again for their wonderful organization, and they definitely deserve our respect."
Stephen Corica, manager of Sydney FC, said:
"Things are going well and the health and safety measures are being implemented properly. Everything is of the highest level. We have a great feeling and are very happy with everything that Qatar has to offer. We played at Al Janoub Stadium and the Khalifa International Stadium. They are superb facilities, and I think that the other stadiums will also be at the same level of magnificence and we look forward to playing at these stadiums again."
Sydney FC player Alex Wilkinson said:
"Qatar is making tremendous efforts and providing the utmost protection for all teams and players and officials. Since our arrival, the overall organization has been great for all participants in the tournament."
Cover image: QFA
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