DOHA: The Saudi Arabian Football Association has entered a new agreement with the Ecuadorian Football Federation with the signing of a memorandum of understanding in Doha on Wednesday.
As the first agreement of its type to be signed between SAFF and a CONMEBOL member association, the MoU represents a new chapter for Saudi Arabia’s football ties with the South American region.
The partnership aims to advance both federations’ shared objectives to grow football on the pitch and off in their respective countries. It addresses a wide variety of issues including, but not limited to, talent identification, refereeing, coaching, technical development, governance, women’s football and sports science.
SAFF President Yasser Al-Misehal and EFF President Francisco Egas signed the official agreement at a ceremony held at Saudi House, Saudi football’s dedicated home on Doha’s corniche.
Ahead of both countries’ FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 campaigns, Saudi Arabia and Ecuador faced off in a friendly match in Murcia’s Estadio Nueva Condomina in June that ended in a 0-0 draw.
In recent years, SAFF put pen to paper on over 20 similar agreements with other federations across the globe, including Croatia, India, Singapore and Ivory Coast, as the country progresses its footballing ambitions and strengthens partnerships internationally.
“We are delighted to signal a new era of partnership between us and our good friends at the Ecuadorian Football Federation. Ecuadorian football resonates with fans across the globe as the country has produced numerous football stars in recent years and consistently qualified to the FIFA World Cup,” said Al-Misehal.
He added: “Today’s agreement (comes) as part of our strong efforts at SAFF to grow our positive influence and collaboration with all regions and members’ associations. We are confident this MoU will build on our existing relationship with the EFF and bring focus and structure to it moving forward. There are plenty of opportunities for us to learn from each other and collaborate...to benefit the beautiful game across our football-passionate countries.”
Earlier last month, Al-Misehal joined the opening ceremony of CONMEBOL’s dedicated FIFA World Cup pavilion, Tree of Dreams, in Doha, representing another sign of the strong ties between Saudi Arabia, the South American governing body and its member associations.