Sunday 11 June 2023, 14:30

FIFA President meets Türkiye President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan

  • Meeting with Turkish President takes place in Istanbul prior to UEFA Champions League final

  • Leaders discuss football development projects in Türkiye

  • FIFA donated to relief effort following February 2023 earthquake

FIFA President Gianni Infantino has held talks with Türkiye President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan in Istanbul where they discussed the current and future state of the game in the football-mad country. The future of football in Türkiye was at the heart of the discussion at the meeting where the FIFA President was accompanied by FIFA Legends Roberto Baggio, Youri Djorkaeff, and Houssine Kharja. “It was my pleasure to meet with the President of Türkiye, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, today in Istanbul,” said Mr. Infantino, who presented President Erdoğan with a shirt bearing his name as both prepared to attend Saturday’s UEFA Champions League final between Manchester City and FC Internazionale Milano in Istanbul.

“Türkiye has great footballing heritage and it was great to discuss the further development of our beautiful game in the country, together with Turkish Football Federation President Mehmet Büyükekşi.”

TFF President Büyükekşi laid out his vision for football in Türkiye when he met Mr. Infantino in Paris last year. The Turkish Football Federation (TFF) has been an active participant in the FIFA Forward programme as they make headway to bringing his strategy to fruition, notably by extending the TFF Riva Facility used by the country’s national teams thanks in part to FIFA Forward funding.

FIFA has also been partner in helping with the relief effort following the devastating earthquake that killed over 50,000 people in Türkiye and nearly 9,000 in neighbouring Syria on 6 February this year. The FIFA Foundation was one of a number of football-related donors to the relief effort, making USD 1 million available to provide urgent humanitarian aid in the immediate wake of the earthquake following consultation with the TFF and the Syrian Football Association (SFA) as well as a number of local and international NGOs on the ground.