Bahrain's Sheikh Salman bin Ebrahim Al-Khalifa has been re-elected to a fresh four year term as head of the AFC. File photo/ AFP
Asia’s football chief and FIFA’s second-in-command Sheikh Salman Bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa skipped his re-election to a fresh four-year term on Saturday after the death of his mother.
The Bahraini royal, a recent target of human rights campaigners, was the notable absentee at the Asian Football Confederation Congress in Kuala Lumpur, where he was re-elected unopposed.
“This (death) is of course a big tragedy where words cannot help,” FIFA president Gianni Infantino told delegates, leading them in a moment’s silence.
“I can only ask you to stand up, to think on Salman, to give him a big hug and to tell him we are with him.”
Infantino said Asia was showing unity and “stability” by re-electing Sheikh Salman, who sent a statement expressing his “heartfelt apologies” for his absence.
He pointed to a record, decade-long commercial deal struck last year, and said it would not have been possible without good governance and reforms to AFC competitions.
“Together, we will grow stronger. Together, Asian football will grow stronger,” Sheikh Salman said.
The Bahraini now starts a new term lasting until 2023 which also renews his position as world body FIFA’s senior vice-president under Infantino.
All India Football Federation (AIFF) President Praful Patel was on Saturday elected to the FIFA council during the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Congress
The six other players were injured but not seriously in the crash, close to the southern town of Alanya, state news agency Anadolu said.
FIFA president Gianni Infantino said he had turned FIFA into an organisation “synonymous with credibility” as he was re-elected for a second term as president of world football’s governing body. It was a formality that the 49 year-old would be waved through for a new four-year mandate, until 2023, as he stood unopposed
Nicknamed “El Pibe de Oro,” meaning "The Golden Boy" for his unique dribbling skills and charismatic personality that helped Argentina win the World Cup in 1986.
Raakezz, trained by Nicholas Bachalard, for his main patron Sheikh Ahmed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, leads the strong field of 11, which have been declared for the feature race which carries a prize purse of Dhs100,000.
Saeed Hareb, Secretary General of Dubai Sports Council (DSC), received Bernard Caiazzo, the president of one of France’s oldest clubs AS Saint-Etienne, at the council’s headquarters.