Match against Aspire Academy kicks off Qatar Foundation tour.
Qatar’s footballing stars of tomorrow have tested their skills against China’s hottest prospects, with Dalian Professional FC’s Under 14 side visiting Doha as part of a week-long football tour.
The Under 14’s from the Wanda Group owned football club in the South of China kicked off their Qatar Foundation (QF) tour with a match against Aspire Academy. The game, which took place at QF, saw the two teams go head to head at Education City in what is the first of three games against local opposition for the young Chinese stars.
The Chinese team will train daily at the facilities in QF in preparation for their remaining games, which are set to take place on December 19 and 20 at Awsaj Recreation in Education City. The games are open to the public to watch.
The Academy Technical Director, Pere Garcia, from Dalian Professional FC who accompanied the squad of 22 in Qatar, said:
"The team are having a fantastic time here in Doha. Qatar Foundation have provided an action-packed schedule, combining training and matches with the opportunity to visit iconic landmarks and learn all about Qatari culture and heritage.
“Our young players will go back to China with new cultural learnings, which are important for their future development. We're very grateful to be able to benefit from the great relationship between Wanda Group and Qatar Foundation."
Amy Johnson, Director, Community Engagement, Qatar Foundation, added: “We are delighted to welcome the Dalian FC U14 team to Qatar for the first time, as part of an ongoing partnership between the Wanda Group and Qatar Foundation.
“This tour serves as a unique opportunity for cultural exchange between the various players during the matches, as we know sport truly has an innate ability to cross borders and bring people together.
“It also serves as a unique opportunity to showcase Education City as an education and sporting destination to the youth and wider Chinese community, as QF’s and its Chinese engagement grows.”
Wanda Group, who brought the team of 22 to Qatar, has a strong commitment to inspiring the next generation of footballing talent in China and all over the world. As part of this commitment and thanks to the collaboration with QF, it has provided the platform for some of its top young talent to be part of the FIFA Club World Cup Qatar 2019™ through its FIFA Flagbearers Programme, experiencing a new culture and taking part in matches against local youth teams.
As part of the trip, the team has explored a number of cultural landmarks, including Souq Waqif and the National Museum of Qatar. Additionally, the team toured Education City to learn more about Qatar Foundation’s recreation and academic offerings.