Former French footballer Marcel Desailly is looking forward to the first World Cup being held in the Middle East, as the Qatar FIFA World Cup countdown accelerates.
Speaking to Qatar media this week, Desailly said he believes it’s essential that the Middle East hosts the World Cup, noting he is thrilled that children in the region will experience the world’s biggest sporting event for the first time.
“…It needed to come to the Middle East. There’s been infrastructure put in place, which has boosted the economy of the region, whether it’s stadiums, roads or subways.
“I’m just thrilled that young kids in the Middle East are going to have their World Cup; their reference point. They’ve watched it take place everywhere else and it never came to this region before – so it’s a real pleasure for them to host it now,” he said.
Desailly is not new to the World Cup scene as the central defender was a part of the record-breaking French national team, that went on to win the FIFA tournament in 1998.
When asked what advice he would give Qatar players playing in the World Cup, Desailly responded that it would take discipline and attention to succeed in the tournament.
Desailly is a familiar name to local fans in Qatar as the French player won a Qatar Stars League title with the Al-Gharafa Sports Club during the 2004-05 season.
Qatar has equipped eight stadiums for the world’s largest football event, which will take place from 20 November to 18 December.