David Butorac, Chief Executive Officer, OSN
Bringing together the best football talent from Saudi Arabia, UAE, New Zealand and Trinidad & Tobago, OSN Cup, organised by the Saudi Arabian Football Federation (SAFF) and OSN gears up for a roaring kick-off on Thursday, September 5 at the King Fahd International Stadium in Riyadh, KSA.
Thursday’s opener, set for 6.45 p.m., is a key match for both teams (UAE and Trinidad & Tobago) seeking a flying start to this prestigious international football tournament. This will be followed by the highly anticipated match between home team, Saudi Arabia and New Zealand at 9.15 p.m.
Ahmed Eid Al-Harbi, President of the Saudi Arabian Football Federation (SAFF), said: “We are confident that the inaugural OSN Cup will not only put the spotlight on emerging football talent, but will also reiterate Saudi Arabia’s credentials as the ultimate sporting destination. We thank OSN for organising this initiative which provides regional teams such as Saudi Arabia and UAE the opportunity to compete with international talent. I wish all the teams the very best.”
David Butorac, Chief Executive Officer, OSN, said: “OSN Cup is our tribute to football and to all sports fans, who love the game. As the region’s home for premium sports entertainment, we are committed to bringing the region’s favourite sport to the forefront through real sporting action and an exceptional live telecast for millions to enjoy. We will continue to invest in Saudi Arabia bringing the best family entertainment and sports experiences to the Kingdom.
“I thank SAFF for their fantastic support in making OSN Cup a reality and look forward to two-days of world class football action from the heart of Saudi Arabia.”
Audiences across the region can enjoy every moment from the OSN Cup Live and in stunning High Definition on OSN Sports HD and via ON Play where the matches will be streamed live so viewers can watch anytime, anywhere on multiple devices. Viewers can also tune in to Saudi TV or Dubai TV.
Commenting on the OSN Cup, Juan Ramón López Caro, head coach of the Saudi Arabia National football team said: “OSN Cup provides a platform for Saudi football fans to watch their favourite players in action. We have trained hard and are looking forward to showcasing the strengths of some of our finest football players, who will soon go on to represent us within the global circuit.”
Mahdi Ali Hassan Redha, who led the United Arab Emirates in qualifying for the 2012 Summer Olympics in London said: “My players are in good shape and spirit and we have a sound strategy in place. It is important to win the opening match and we look forward to taking the OSN Cup home. Winning the 2013 Gulf Cup has helped to boost the teams morale and I hope we are able to deliver a similar performance.”
The finals, along with the match for third and fourth place, will be held on Monday, September 09 with nearly 60,000 fans cheering on their favourite teams from the stadium.
Ricki Herbert, coach of New Zealand ‘All Whites’ squad said: “International football is not easy no matter where you go and to play in the Middle East is tough. The pace and technical ability of all teams at this tournament will be high and this will be an important test for us.”
Stephen Hart, head coach of the Trinidad & Tobago National football team, added: “We are honoured to be part of this inaugural event and look forward to a thrilling football season. It’s good for us to play countries with different styles such as United Arab Emirates– each brings their own set of skills and it’s important for our team to learn to adapt and face new opposing teams.”
Billed to become one of the most popular football tournaments in the region, OSN Cup will be held annually, drawing in football talent from around the world and the Middle East.