RIYADH: Saudi Arabia’s mega city NEOM is hosting an international beach soccer tournament from July 17 to 20 on the lush white beaches of the Red Sea coast.
Running alongside the tournament will also be the 50th Wakeboard World Cup, rugby and tennis in the Gayal region in NEOM.
The FIFA-approved football tournament will see international teams grapple for glory at the NEOM Beach Soccer Cup.
Countries including China and England will compete against Arab teams from Saudi Arabia, UAE, and Egypt in a purpose-built venue, according to a tweet on the official NEOM Twitter page.
This will be the second time a sports event has been held, the first being an extreme adventure sports tournament in April.
“The reason we chose extreme adventure sports at the first event in NEOM was because it’s a beautiful environment,” said Jason Harborow, head of NEOM’s future of sport sector.
“Sport is right at the center of what we want to achieve at NEOM, and that means sport for all: male, female, children and athletes with disabilities. NEOM will be for everybody.”
NEOM is being marketed as a tourist destination designed to attract dreamers and elite minds from around the world.
The aim of the mega project is to attract new business and work as an incubator of future technologies, while also acting as a major economic power and a leading center for global investment.
”The team looks forward to the day when NEOM will host a wide range of bold sports to become a world center for sport enthusiasts, thrill seekers and an international sports center that embraces the world’s most important championships in all areas,” said Jason Harborow, head of future sports at NEOM.
The tournament is part of the ongoing effort to promote the sport sector in NEOM and business that comes with it, including encouraging major sporting events to the region.