Hammam opens AFC U-13 Festival of Football

The Asian Football Federation is impressed with the quality of football displayed by players in the AFC's Under-13 Football Festival which the Malaysian state of Sabah is hosting. Thanking the organisers, AFC President Mohamed Bin Hammam said: “It’s my first visit to this beautiful city and I would like to thank Sabah for hosting this event. I would like to announce that we will organise this event for two more years in Malaysia. As part of AFC’s Vision Asia project, the AFC U-13 Festival of Football gives us a great opportunity to see the future stars of Asia. These young players will represent their country again within two years’ time in AFC U-16 Championship and could also represent their national teams if they continue to work hard. AFC is proud that over 1000 players take part and over 150 coaches and referees graduate from this event. Be proud of yourself and show your discipline, which reflects our great Asian culture. The future is Asia and you are the future,” he told the young players.

"The standard of Asian football is certainly moving in the right direction," Hammam said at the press conference after officiating at the opening. He described the 30-minute match between Malaysia and Australia which the former won 4-0 as very entertaining with good display of skills and football flair. "There's a lot of talented players and they are also very entertaining," he said.