The strategy of soccer (football) in the UAE: Field trip to Fifa U17 match Brazil vs. UAE

Last month my Strategy class went on a trip to the UAE vs. Brazil Fifa U17 football match... the assignment was to attend and pick one aspect of the event to write about... they had to look at the "strategic" aspect of something and analysis it...

There were three main areas I suggested they look to:

  1. Why the UAE holds such events?
  2. Running the event itself (e.g. the marketing, the free tickets, the security, etc.)
  3. The actually match itself (yes, a classic underdog vs. titan)
Of course I got great answers... 

There are a few main reasons the students said the UAE holds these events:
  • To promote fitness and world class soccer (football) among Emiratis (with the hope of course to inspire youth to take up fitness and also train hard to make it to the top rungs)
  • To put the UAE on a world stage and prove that events held here are well run and above all safe for spectators, players and the general population
  • With the event held in several Emirates, it was to bring world class events to places that don't often see them (e.g. Fujairah and RAK)
The event itself was seen in different, genrally positive, lights:
  • They felt the marketing in Dubai, Fujairah, Sharjah and RAK was well done... and the games were well attended (anecdotal evidence)... but that maybe more effort could have been made in AD... or perhaps different "tactics" used... 
  • They appreciated the safety and security of the event - and know that this is one of the "core competencies" of the country - we feel and are safe in a region not known for safety!
  • They understood that the tickets were made free so that anyone who wanted to go could go... again, a benefit of living here is that "normal" people do have access to events they would not have access to at "home" ... (parking was free too and I know a lot of expat families made a family trip of the games)

The game...

  • OK, many students were not keen on going due to the fact that well, the UAE team was bound to lose... Brazilians don't drink milk from their mothers, they drink and eat football from birth :) (e.g. the game was rigged from before the players stepped foot on the field!)
  • Many looked at it from the position that the goal of the game was not so much to win, but not to lose badly... I got a few game diagrams and descriptions of tactics that tried to explain these things to me... 
  • The team did better than the last time... they at least scored a goal!!!!! (Final score 6 - 1)
But we enjoyed it... it cost no money for anyone... and I got to see a few alumni that came along ... but most important they thought about strategy, tactics and operationalisation of goals... and that is always a good thing!

8,000 tickets "sold"

Mr. Khalid, the number 1 UAE football fan! Remember I ate at his restaurant :)

Mansour, me and Mr. Khalid

A few of the students :)

A few more...

And a few more!

1 comment:

  1. Great information about Sports event.Thanks for sharing