President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev has received FIFA President Gianni Infantino and Secretary General Fatma Samoura.
FIFA President Gianni Infantino expressed satisfaction with his visit to Azerbaijan and the meeting with the head of state. He stressed the importance of the fact that Baku was elected one of the 12 world cities to host FIFA Executive Football Summit, emphasizing the first summit to be held in Azerbaijan`s capital.
President Ilham Aliyev noted the significance of FIFA Executive Football Summit to be held in Baku, and expressed his confidence that this event will be very successful. The head of state described FIFA President Gianni Infantino and Secretary General Fatma Samoura`s visit to Azerbaijan as an important event, and noted that Azerbaijani football fans are happy with this trip. The President said all this shows that Azerbaijan occupies a unique place in the world football family. Touching upon the development of sports in the country, President Ilham Aliyev said that football is one of the priority areas in Azerbaijan. President Ilham Aliyev underlined that a special program for the development of football was adopted, and many modern stadiums were constructed in Baku and in other cities of Azerbaijan, adding that today all the necessary infrastructure was created in the country for developing football. Noting that the interest in football and the number of fans is continuously growing in the country, the head of state said that the Azerbaijani national team and clubs play a better football. The President expressed his hope that the country will achieve more success and claim football victories. President Ilham Aliyev expressed his confidence that FIFA President Gianni Infantino and Secretary General Fatma Samoura`s visit to the country will contribute to Azerbaijan`s international cooperation in the field of sports.
FIFA President Gianni Infantino said: “Azerbaijan is a football country in a true sense of the word. Before I became FIFA President, we collaborated with AFFA during my tenure in UEFA. We were looking ahead and considering joint projects with Azerbaijan at that time. I and Secretary General Fatma Samoura are witnesses of the development of football and football movement in Azerbaijan. You have already organized the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup in Baku.”
Gianni Infantino stressed the importance of the fact that Baku is one the 13 cities to host the Euro 2020. He pointed out that establishing football infrastructure in Azerbaijan and attaching great importance to children's football led to the development of football in the country. The FIFA president also mentioned that the 2019 UEFA Europa League final in Baku is a result of the development of football in Azerbaijan. Gianni Infantino hailed the success of the Azerbaijan national football team and FC Qarabag, and noted that AFFA's activity is an example to many countries.
Gianni Infantino then presented FIFA keepsakes to the head of state.