Riyadh is to host to the inaugural OSN Cup, an international football tournament organized by the region’s leading pay-TV network, OSN, and the Saudi Arabian Football Federation (SAFF).
Kicking off Sept. 5, the tournament will see national football teams from Saudi Arabia, the UAE, New Zealand and Trinidad & Tobago vie for the coveted trophy.
In a first of its kind initiative, OSN Cup highlights OSN’s continued commitment to bring live sporting action to the region and inspire young talent in the Kingdom. OSN will also honor the most valuable player of the tournament.
David Butorac, CEO of OSN, said: “Football is the most popular sport in Saudi Arabia and across the Arab world. As a premium provider of world-class sports entertainment, we are now taking live sporting action to the next level. The OSN Cup is a tribute to our viewers and football fans across the region.
“The OSN Cup also supports the current focus of the Saudi authorities to promote football, a game in which the Kingdom has proved its excellence. By bringing together national and international talent, we promise some of the most exciting football action as well as the opportunity for the Saudi and UAE teams to take on international teams. We are thankful to the Saudi Arabian Football Federation for their fantastic support in organizing what will be an exciting tournament.”
Ahmed Eid Al-Harbi, president of the Saudi Arabia Football Federation said: “Our goal is to promote the culture of football in the Kingdom, set more platforms for our talented team to demonstrate their skills and to encourage new talent to step forward and be proud participants in Saudi Arabia’s modern football history. OSN Cup is a significant initiative as it brings international football talent to our country. We are looking forward to some exciting matches that will delight true football fans and we thank OSN for organizing this initiative which we are confident will be a mega success.”
More than 25,000 spectators are expected to watch the matches live, which will be held at the Prince Faisal bin Fahd Stadium in Riyadh.
OSN will broadcast the matches live and regional football fans will also be able to enjoy the matches on select free-to-air channels.
“Our objective is to take the OSN Cup to the widest possible audience across the region,” added Butorac. “We have recorded robust growth in the Kingdom with total subscribers increasing by over 35 percent in 2012. As part of our growth plans, we will continue to look at diverse opportunities to engage with Saudis, bringing them the sports and entertainment experiences they love.”
The OSN Cup, which is set to become an annual OSN initiative, is part of the network’s wider plans to roll out several new activities across the Arab world that promote youth engagement and bring the family together for fun entertainment experiences. OSN Cup is also in line with the network’s CSR strategy which aims to encourage individuals across the region to adopt more active and healthier lifestyles.