By our correspondent
KARACHI: Lahore will host the 2022 FIFA World Cup Trophy tour as the trophy will arrive there on June 7, the organisers confirmed on Tuesday.
According to sources, the organisers had earlier picked Islamabad as the top choice for hosting the trophy tour but were forced to change the venue due to prevailing political uncertainty which may again grip the country’s capital in particular.
“The trophy will arrive in Lahore on June 7, 2022, and is an extraordinary opportunity for fans to see football’s most coveted prize up close, adding to the excitement and anticipation of football’s largest spectacle, the FIFA World Cup,” the organisers announced on Tuesday through a press release.
Coca Cola Pakistan-Afghanistan vice-president Fahad Ashraf said that sports help bring people together.
“Sports brings communities and nations together and at Coca-Cola we are delighted to champion this spirit of unity,” Fahad has been quoted as saying.
FIFA World Cup winner and legendary former French footballer Christian Karembeu will accompany the trophy. The trophy will stay for a full day at Lahore and will leave for Saudi Arabia the next day.
Coca Cola sponsors the trophy’s global tour. Pakistan is one of the 51 countries that this year’s FIFA World Cup Trophy Tour will visit. “Together with FIFA, Coca-Cola is aiming to visit all 211 FIFA member associations by 2030,” the organisers said.
The trophy will be brought to Pakistan from Uzbekistan.
The FIFA World Cup Trophy is awarded to the winners of the FIFA World Cup while remaining in FIFA’s possession. Made of solid gold and weighing 6.142kg, the trophy depicts two human figures holding the globe aloft. Its current design dates back to 1974. As one of the most recognised sports symbols in the world and a priceless icon, the original FIFA World Cup Trophy can only be touched and held by a very select group of people, which includes former winners of the FIFA World Cup and heads of state.
Because regulations state that the original trophy must remain in FIFA’s possession and cannot be won outright the team winning the FIFA World Cup retains the authentic trophy temporarily and is then permanently awarded the tournament edition trophy, the FIFA World Cup Winner’s Trophy, which is gold-plated, rather than solid gold, and engraved with the year, host country and winners of the respective event.