The 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia may have ended last night, but a sense of football just beginning has swept over the Middle East. adidas has been creating moments across the region, and continues to do so, in celebration of local fans and the tournaments to be hosted ahead.
Dubai residents were treated to the last live scoreboard update from The Burj Khalifa and adidas last night, as France lifted the trophy. adidas partnered with Emaar, the developer of the iconic Dubai landmark to creatively celebrate the FIFA World Cup TM, by turning The Burj Khalifa in Downtown Dubai, into the highest football live scorecard in the world – the façade is the equivalent of 17 football pitches. The region and its expats saw the scoreboard lighting up 163 for tournament goals while cheering on 32 nations across 64 matches. adidas wanted to hero the beautiful game by giving participating countries their moment in the Dubai skyline.
adidas didn’t stop there. The sportswear brand announced it had stitched the words ‘100 million strong’ in Arabic on to Mo Salah’s Energy Mode X18+ boots, so that he could carry his country with him while he played in the group stages. A signed shirt and a pair of these very boots will go on display at The Dubai Mall adidas store on 26th July for football fans across the region to view and photograph, as well as be in with a chance to win them.
The global sports brand isn’t just about the professionals either. They want to find the next creators of the game in the region. Talented local football player, Baraa Lulu, was presented the opportunity of a lifetime as a result. Crowned the most valuable player at adidas Tango League Dubai, which captured the interest of talented young players in the city last month, Baraa is currently at the FIFA World CupTM going head-to-head with 22 other players from across the world for a spot in Xabi Alonso’s Tango Squad FC side.
Baraa, a Palestinian national who resides in the UAE, impressed a panel of judges made up of adidas VIP’s and local sports media with his flair, swag and creativity to win the highly sought-after MVP title, and secure his place at the Tango League Finals in Russia this July. Dubai is one of 39 cities globally to have a Tango League but is the only one in the Middle East.
Commenting on adidas’ investment into the region, Fabio Zuluaga Director BU Football of adidas Emerging Markets said: “We believe the power of sport can change lives, and a FIFA World Cup TM is something that sticks in the mind of fans and players alike for an eternity. We wanted to give people of the Middle East memories, whether by seeing their nation’s flag light up in lights on The Burj Khalifa, owning Mo Salah’s boots or winning the chance to go to Russia and compete against the world’s best street footballers.
“As a brand, we also wanted to recognise the passion for football in this region, which is only going to intensify as the AFC Asian Cup and the FIFA World Cup TM head to our shores. This is just the start of something in the Middle East and we look forward to inspiring this and the next generation to love football.”
adidas believes the power of sport can change lives, through an athlete’s imagination and use of creativity to make a difference in their game, life and world. With the help of Mo Salah and others like him, adidas aims to inspire Creators across sport culture to be courageous, unexpected and to shape their own reality.
For more information, please visit @adidasfootball.