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Vientiane: Shaikh Salman bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa, the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) President has been in the Laotian capital of Vientiane holding meetings with top Government and Lao Football Federation (LFF) officials and the ground-breaking for the latest AFC Mini-Pitch project.

During the trip – the AFC President’s third to the country – he met Lao People’s Democratic Republic (PDR) Vice-President H.E. Prof. Dr Phankham Viphavan and Vice-Minister of Education and Sports H.E. Prof. Dr Kongsy Sengmany at the Presidential Palace.

Shaikh Salman then visited the LFF headquarters for the ground-breaking ceremony for the AFC Mini-Pitch which is being provided under the President’s Initiatives. He cut the ribbon alongside LFF President Viphet Sihachakr and HE Prof. Dr. Kongsy Sengmany.

The AFC President said: “The AFC’s commitment to the Lao Football Federation shines through with the AFC President’s Initiatives. The AFC completely understands that for an aspiring Member Association, a little help and assistance from the AFC can make a big difference on their football landscape.”

Shaikh Salman, acknowledging that Lao ‘punches above its weight in AFC competitions’, praised the LFF for their stance on match-fixing, saying: “I congratulate Lao Football Federation and its President on the initiatives taken against match-fixing. Match-fixing is a disease and we must eradicate it from football.”

He added that the unity and solidarity within the AFC now presents great opportunities: “Now the AFC is a stable organisation and this is something we should be proud of. Your support enabled us to get together as a family again. Now that there is stability, we have more confidence to do bigger things.

“We look to the future with high hopes. Our duty is to make a difference. The level of football in a country does not depend on one organisation. We must all join hands and work together.”

Photos: LFF

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