Abu Dhabi is to host the FIFA Club World Cup featuring Chelsea, the UAE’s Al Jazira and five other teams at the start of 2022.
Japan had been scheduled to host the matches but have backed out due to Covid-19 concerns.
There’s no official date for the tournament yet, but FIFA said it would be in ‘early 2022.’
The tournament puts the best club teams from across the world together. And the UAE champions Al Jazira will be there alongside Al Ahly of Egypt, Auckland City from New Zealand and Chelsea from Europe.
It will be the fifth time the UAE has hosted the FIFA Club World Cup and the second time Abu Dhabi club Al Jazira have played in the tournament.
They reached the semi-final in 2017 when they were beaten by eventual winners Real Madrid.
Aref Hamad Al Awani, general secretary of Abu Dhabi Sports Council, said: “We are absolutely delighted to host the Fifa Club World Cup in Abu Dhabi for the fifth time. It goes without saying the competition brings both the fan-favourite clubs and players from around the world.
“This is awesome and a tremendous honour for us. We would like to thank FIFA for the confidence and faith they have on us, based on the past successes of playing host to this immensely popular competition.
It means the Middle East will host some of the biggest football games in the world next year. Following the Abu Dhabi games, attention will shift to Qatar who will host the World Cup from November 2022.
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