Dhaka to Host International Club Cup in November

Football is a popular sport in many parts of the world and this is certainly true in Bangladesh, where football is supported by hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of fans. With this in mind, the news of the upcoming International Club Cup Football Tournament to be played at Bangabandhu National Stadium in Dhaka, Bangladesh, will no doubt be met with great enthusiasm. Bangladesh Football Federation president Kazi Salahuddin has revealed that the tournament is likely to take place in November 2009.

During his two week tour of Asian countries, Salahuddin met with the various football federations, and by the time he returned to Bangladesh, he had the commitment of clubs from Qatar, United Arab Emirates, Vietnam, Uzbekistan, Thailand, Syria, Indonesia, Lebanon, Iran and Iraq. Two of Bangladesh’s top teams will compete and Turkmenistan, Sri Lanka and Lebanon have expressed their interest in participating in what promises to be a world-class event.

The name and the fixtures for the tournament still need to be finalized, but the general secretary of the Bangladesh Football Federation (BFF), Al Musabbir Sadi, noted that they were keen to keep the tournament at club level, as this generates a lot of interest among spectators. This would also give Bangladeshi club teams the opportunity to pit their skills against international talent. The Bangladesh Football Federation, which was founded in 1972, oversees football in Bangladesh, including the Bangla National Team, otherwise known as the Bengal Tigers. The BFF has been a member of the Asian Football Confederation and FIFA since 1974.

Salahuddin’s visit to various Asian countries was to participate in the election of a FIFA representative from the executive body of the Asian Football Confederation (AFC). There is currently some controversy over the election which is to take place on 8 May, with Bahrain’s Sheikh Salman bin Ebrahim Al-Khalifa challenging Mohammed bin Hammam who is currently in office. Officials have called on FIFA president Sepp Blatter to oversee the voting.

Football fans in Bangladesh need not concern themselves with the politics of the game, which will no doubt be sorted out amicably. The November tournament will likely bring many other fans into Bangladesh as they support their various teams and it is certainly an event for football fans to look forward to.