By Staff writer
World's biggest club tournament set to return to the UAE after previously hosting in 2009 and 2010
The UAE will host the FIFA Club World Cup tournament in 2017 and 2018, it has been confirmed following the 2016 final which saw Real Madrid crowned world champions.
The FIFA Club World Cup 2016 final, played in Yokohama International Stadium, saw the Spanish giants beat Japan’s Kashima Antlers, thanks to a Cristiano Ronaldo hat-trick.
The UAE was previously host to the tournament in 2009 and 2010.
At a handing over ceremony, Japanese Football Association president Kohzo Tashima said: “The FIFA Club World Cup, the event loved and enjoyed by people around the world, will now be held in the United Arab Emirates for the next two years.
"It’s been seven years since the UAE last hosted the event and I'm sure the fans in UAE have been awaiting for this event to return. We can't wait to see another wonderful club football tournament held in a wonderful stadium and hosted by a wonderful nation.”
The transfer of hosting duties from Japan 2016 to UAE 2017 took place shortly before the kick-off of the 2016 final.
The 2016 final marked the first time an Asian team has ever featured in the tournament’s gold-medal match.
Tashima handed over a ceremonial shirt to UAE 2017 tournament director Aref Al Awani, marking the official transfer of duties for hosting FIFA’s annual club showpiece which brings together the champions of Africa, Asia, Europe, North, Central American and Caribbean, Oceania, South America and the domestic league champions of the host nation.For all the latest sports news from the UAE and Gulf countries, follow us on Twitter and Linkedin, like us on Facebook and subscribe to our YouTube page, which is updated daily.