Tuesday 21 January 2020, 21:24

FIFA President addresses business leaders at Donald Trump dinner in Davos

Gianni Infantino was invited by Donald Trump to make the introduction speech at a dinner hosted by the President of the United States at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, and the FIFA President said that he hopes that “the ‘American dream’ becomes reality…all over the world” when addressing an audience of top business leaders.

The FIFA President also took the opportunity to present Mr Trump with an official FIFA match ball to open his address, stating: “This is just to remind everyone what the real priority is of life. It gives joy and it gives hope to millions and millions of people all over the world. That is all we have to do.”

Mr Infantino referenced the continued economic growth of football in the United States, adding: “America is on the verge of becoming a great soccer power.”

The FIFA President then referenced the competitive spirit of the President of the United States in line with fulfilling the ‘American dream’.

“The ‘American dream’ is something we all need to have,” Mr Infantino said. “All those who love soccer. The four billion people around the world. We all need to dream this dream and I am sure that with your help, President, with your contribution and the contribution of all of you here, we can make sure that the ‘American dream’ becomes reality, not only in America, as we have seen, but all over the world.”

In 2026, USA is set to play a central role in FIFA competitions, as together with Canada and Mexico, it will play host to the largest and most inclusive FIFA World Cup™ finals ever. Forty-eight teams from all six continents will feature in the 80-match competition, which is planned to be staged in 16 cities across three countries, thus creating new business opportunities in the host countries and across the world.

“It’s an honour to be involved with bringing the World Cup to the United States,” President Trump replied. “I was involved as president-elect and even a little bit before that, but they called and they said, could you help. And through yourself (Mr Infantino) and your people, [FIFA] chose the United States, and we’re bringing some games to Mexico, and… to Canada, and it will be tremendous.

“I really appreciate it, and I appreciate your steadfast movement,” the President of the United States concluded. “It’s going to be very exciting... I want to thank you very much. You have been my great friend, and it has been an honour.”