‘I loved it,’ says UN chief in Iraq on Saudi-Iraqi football match at Gulf Cup
ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – The United Nations envoy to Iraq, Jennine Hennis-Plaschart, told Kurdistan 24 on Monday that she “loved” the football match between Saudi Arabia and Iraq as part of the 25th Arabian Gulf Cup in Basra.
The UN diplomat and a number of other international officials attended the match played on a muddy pitch in the southern city of Basra. The Iraqi team won the game 2:0.
“The Iraqi national team was wonderful, despite the rain [that made it] very difficult to play,” she told Kurdistan 24 following the match.
“I loved it. It was a perfect night for anyone who loves Iraq and football,” the diplomat added.
Iraq is hosting the Arabian Gulf Cup for the first time after four decades.
Analysts believe the football tournament is a “glimmer of hope” for the country to overcome its isolation in the international sports arena.
The football tournament will continue until January 19, with teams from Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Oman, United Arab Emirates, Yemen, Bahrain, and Iraq.
“I’m overwhelmed with great happiness and a wonderful feeling on the occasion of the launch of the Gulf Cup Football Championship,” Prime Minister Masrour Barzani recently said.
Kurdistan Region President Nechirvan Barzani along with Kurdish governors attended the opening ceremony on January 6, 2023.