Abedi Pele

Ghana legend Abedi Pele is willing to assist in the development of football in the UAE and the Middle East region.

“Yes, we could start by bringing in my club here as part of an exchange programme. With the Fifa World Cup coming to Qatar in 2022, this area has shown a huge, huge potential, and we would love to help out,” Pele said while attending the announcement of the 7th Dubai International Sports Conference on Monday.

Born Abedi Ayew, the African great, now 47, was one of the early African footballers who ventured out of the continent to ply their trade in the lucrative European leagues while playing for Lille and Olympique Marseille in France.

He went on to captain Ghana, and was given the name ‘Pele’ in recognition of his superior ability that evoked comparisons to the Brazilian great, Pele.

Three of his sons, Ebrahim, Andre and Jordan also became internationals for Ghana, in which Ebrahim and Andre got selected for the Fifa World Cup 2010 in South Africa.

Pele now has his own professional club — Nania FC — that has worked its way up from Division IV to Division II, winning the FA Cup and Super Cup last season.

This week, Pele was in Dubai to back the setting up of GEA World Middle East, dealing with everything connected to football, from player transfers to training camps and friendly matches.



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