Australian Indigenous Football Championships held in Queensland

The 2019 Australian Indigenous Football Championships (AIFC) were held this past weekend at the Moreton Bay Sports Complex in Queensland.

Players from around the country travelled to compete in the AIFC, with some coming from as far away as Western Australia and the Northern Territory.

This was the second edition of the tournament after last year’s success, giving more Indigenous players the chance to showcase their talent.

A youth competition was introduced this year, where eight teams competed with the Platypus side defeating the Koalas in the youth Grand Final.

In the men’s Grand Final, the Brisbane Warrigals and Maliyans United played out a 1-1 draw in regulation time. The contest would be decided by a penalty shootout, which Brisbane won to claim the men’s AIFC title.

Maliyans United were also involved in the women’s Grand Final, defeating NQ Brolgas 6-0 to win the tournament.

A game between the Indigenous Football community representative team and the QLD Police Service also took place, with the match played in good spirit.

For the first time, all Semi Finals and Grand Finals were livestreamed by SBS with Craig Foster in attendance on Saturday. Foster commentated these matches, as well as meeting with those at the tournament. The games were simultaneously streamed on the NITV Facebook page.

Murray Bird, Football Queensland (FQ) General Manager of Operations, Compliance and Game Development claimed the event was extremely important for football in Australia.

“Football Queensland is extremely proud to be supporting the Australian Indigenous Football Championships in the event’s second year,” Bird said.

“The tournament is a fantastic event for football in our country.

“We look forward to seeing the Australian Indigenous Football Championships continue to grow in the coming years.”

 

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Philip Panas is a sports journalist with Soccerscene. He reports widely on football policy and industry matters, drawing on his knowledge and passion of the game.

Saudi Arabia’s sporting presence strengthens

Saudi Arabia’s continuous growth within its entertainment sector has taken another major stride, with the Qiddiya Investment Company (QIC) involved in the creation of a futuristic Sports and Entertainment Stadium set to overlook the ever evolving, city of Riyadh.

Named after the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia, The Mohammad bin Salman Stadium will hold up to 45,000 spectators.

The QIC enlisted the guidance of globally renowned architecture firm “Populous”, to assist with the conception of the complex stadium. Bold provisions, involving a retractable roof and LED wall, enable the stadium to transition depending on the requirements of the various events, it may host.

Ranging from lightshows, Football Matches, Boxing Events, E-Sport competitions. The question now begs, what Sport can it not host?

Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman has spearheaded the project, determined to guide Qiddiya, to ultimately become the World’s leading district of Sports and Entertainment. While aiming attention at shifting Saudi Arabia’s culture, through the Qiddiya philosophy,” the Power of Play”.

The Power of Play philosophy leverages extensive research showcasing how interactive activity is vital for cognitive development within society. How sport can be a driving force for unification and social cohesion.

The Stadium is another symbol, indicating the Saudi Arabian presence among the world Sport, becoming more ominous. However, what affect will this stadium have on Football? It is no surprise, given the financial competence, how Saudi Arabia continue to set trends within world football. World class players within Europe are beginning to trade continents, chasing more lucrative paydays abroad.

In what mirrors the stadium and its bold ambitions, Saudi Arabia continues to command its voice to be heard, on a global front in relation to their football. They can no longer be ignored. This state-of-the-art stadium is just another aspect of what the country is capable of, in becoming a football powerhouse.

It is beyond exciting to see Saudi Arabia spearhead a renaissance of football within Asia. Let’s see what magical moments can be created at this exciting location.

PepsiCo and Roshn Saudi League collaborate to increase fan base

The Roshn Saudi League (SPL) has confirmed a substantial agreement with PepsiCo, which will benefit both the league and its fans.

According to the terms of the arrangement, PepsiCo’s engagement will last until the completion of the current RSL season and the full 2024/25 campaign. The partnership will see PepsiCo’s well-known brands integrated into various aspects of the league’s operations, with Aquafina serving as the league’s official water partner, Pepsi as the official soft drink partner, Gatorade as the official sports drink partner, and Lay’s as the official potato chips sponsor.

The alliance intends to improve fans’ match day experiences through a series of activations and events that leverage PepsiCo’s global reputation for quality and innovation. This initiative demonstrates the RSL’s commitment to creating unique and entertaining experiences for its devoted fans.

This collaboration with PepsiCo builds on Lay’s current sponsorship of the Saudi Women’s Premier League, consolidating PepsiCo’s position in the Saudi football scene and confirming the company’s commitment to football development at all levels.

Carlo Nohra, Chief Operating Officer of the Roshn Saudi League, explained why the deal would work for both sides.

“We are delighted to welcome PepsiCo into the RSL family as a gold partner,” he said via press release.

“This partnership aligns with our mission to offer fans innovative and engaging experiences. PepsiCo’s commitment to football and its global reputation for quality will undoubtedly enhance our league’s appeal and the overall fan experience.”

Aamer Sheikh, Chief Executive Officer of PepsiCo Middle East Business Unit added via press release:

“We are thrilled to join hands with The Roshn Saudi League as Gold Sponsors for the season. This partnership signifies a shared commitment of excellence, passion, and the pursuit of victory. Together, we aim to elevate the beautiful game to new heights, delivering unforgettable experiences for fans and fostering a legacy of greatness.”

This partnership with PepsiCo, who are well-known for its strong ties in the sports and entertainment industry, underlines the importance of the league to collaborating with organisations that share a passion for football and its fans.

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