‘Made in Pakistan footballs to be used in world cup’

Leoni says Sialkot is a quality producer of footballs

ISLAMABAD – Ambassador of Brazil to Pakistan Alfredo Leoni has said that Made in Pakistan football will be used during the world cup matches, as the upcoming mega sport event will definitely prove a huge image booster for Brazil.

This is the second time that the world cup event is being held in Brazil.

In an interview, the ambassador said that the football was very important for Brazil. “Whenever you think about football you think about Brazil and vice versa,” he said. “Let me say that football is our best ambassador which is promoting our country’s image all over the world because the most popular sport in the world no doubt is football,” he said.

“We are very happy to host this mega event for the second time. In 1950 Brazil hosted football world cup for the first time. In 1950, the world cup matches took place only in one city – Rio – while this time 12 cities will have the privilege to host world cup matches,” the ambassador said. “We have spent a lot of money on this event especially on up gradation of various play grounds. The money is spent in two areas, first development of infrastructure, which among other things would also improve the living standard of Brazilian people,” he said.

He also said that Brazil shall become focus of entire world’s attention for one month for sure because of this biggest event. “Even countries like Pakistan where football is not a popular sport, Brazil will remain in focus of attention because of football matches,” he said. Brazilians feel proud that they have been given this opportunity to show to the world at large that they can excel in all fields.

“I am quite certain that the football world cup will spur huge economic activity in Brazil. As per estimates over 0.7 million tourists are expected to flock to Brazil during the world cup matches. Most of them will stay for the entire world cup which means for a full month. Likewise, Brazil will ostensibly emerge as a country better known for its tourism as well as business potential,” the ambassador said when asked to share details of economic activity that may be generated because of the event.

To yet another question about security arrangements for the teams and delegates, the ambassador said there are several measures which have been taken concerning security at all levels. The entire air space around the stadium where the match will take place will be blocked two hours before start of the match and afterwards as well. Likewise hundreds of policemen shall be deployed in the cities where matches will take place.

 He said he personally had great expectations that this world cup in Brazil will have a very strong impact on Pakistani society in terms of promoting football and Brazil as well. Since Brazil is situated far way from Pakistan so it is but natural if Pakistanis have a little knowledge of Brazil, however he was quite confident the world cup would certainly help promote knowledge about Brazil in Pakistan.

“I hope Pakistanis interest in Brazil would increase manifold after this world cup, especially among the young people because they take keen interest in this sport. Another thing which we are going to promote is that Pakistani made footballs shall be used in the world cup with a view to strengthening the fact that Sialkot is a quality producer of footballs. This is something Pakistani businessmen and Pakistani people in general can be proud of,” he said.

“I do hope with this world cup we will be able to increase more interest among Pakistani people about Brazil. I wish all Pakistanis to have good time to enjoy matches and join us in sharing excitement and magic of this sport. I wish, like all Brazilians, that our team wins this prestigious event because I believe the Brazilian team is well prepared for the event,” he said. 

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