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Saudi Arabia

Royal blessings: World Cup qualification national achievement, says King Salman

King Salman poses with players of the Saudi Football First Team at Al-Salam Palace in Jeddah on Wednesday. He also met with former Turkish President Abdullah Gul and discussed issues of mutual interest. (SPA)
JEDDAH: King Salman on Wednesday received the chairman of the General Sports Authority (GSA), Turki Al-Asheikh, accompanied by the president and members of Saudi Arabian Football Association (SAFA) and players of the Saudi Football First Team on the occasion of their qualification for 2018 World Cup finals in Russia.
Upon their reception at Al-Salam Palace in Jeddah, King Salman said he was pleased to be among them on this day as they represent their country, which they all have the honor to represent it as it is the Qiblah of Muslims, the land of the Two Holy Mosques and the cradle of Arabism.
He said their qualification (to the World Cup finals) was an achievement for the country and he expressed hope for their success and a safe return to their country.
SAFA President Adel Izzat expressed happiness over meeting King Salman. He said the meeting reflected the care and concern given by the king to the youths and sportsmen which enabled them to occupy top ranks at regional, Arab and global forums, the latest achievement being qualification to the World Cup finals for the fifth time.
He considered the qualification to the World Cup finals one of the fruits of care given by king and the crown prince, whose unlimited support to the players and the administrative and technical staff played a key role in this achievement.
The audience was attended by Prince Abdul Aziz bin Saud bin Naif, minister of interior; Minister of State and Cabinet member Musaed bin Mohammed Al-Aiban; Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Nizar bin Obaid Madani; and a number of officials.

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