The Saudi Arabian Football Federation (SAFF) on Wednesday announced the launch of its bid to host the 2027 AFC Asian Cup for the first time, under the slogan “Forward for Asia.”
The AFC Asian Cup is a 24-team international football tournament run by the Asian Football Confederation every four years. China is set to host the next tournament in 2023, with Saudi Arabia now announcing its bid to host the following 2027 cup.
“As we in Saudi Arabia undertake our own transformation forward through our national Vision 2030, we want to use our long-standing passion for football as a catalyst for the continued growth of football across Asia,” SAFF President Yasser al-Mashal said.
“Our vision for the 2027 AFC Asian Cup is to build much more than a tournament. We want to create a massive move forward for all of Asia, one that is focused on creating a new experience, new exchange, and a new expansion. We look forward to sharing our ideas with the entire Asian football family in the coming months,” he added.
⚽️ 🇸🇦 It's official! 🇸🇦 ⚽️— Saudi 2027 (@saudi2027_) September 9, 2020
We are proud to officially launch our campaign to host the 2027 AFC Asian Cup. 🏟️ 🏆
▶️🔗 https://t.co/O9F0yHTqRs#Saudi2027 #AsianCup2027 #ForwardforAsia pic.twitter.com/hGlcZqdHd0
Saudi Arabia’s football team has one the AFC Asian Cup three times and qualified for the FIFA World Cup five times, but the SAFF’s latest campaign could ensure the Kingdom host's the Asian Cup for the first time in its history.
As part of the campaign, SAFF launched a new logo that portrays the wings of a golden falcon and a football.
The combination of the Kingdom’s national bird and the football is meant to highlight Saudi Arabia’s passion and commitment to host the 2027 AFC Asian Cup, according to organizers.
The campaign is the latest effort by Saudi Arabia to implement Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s Vision 2030 plan – an economic reform plan aimed at diversifying the Kingdom’s economy and developing various sectors such as entertainment, sports, and tourism.