Football
Walter Zenga, former Italian goalkeeper and decorated coach, poses with children during his visit at the Dubai Sports World. Image Credit: Supplied picture

Dubai: Former Italy and Inter Milan goalkeeper Walter Zenga and Brazilian futsal legend Falcao endorsed the Dubai Sports Council and Dubai World Trade Centre for the ‘facilities’ at Dubai Sports World after visiting the venue on Monday.

Housed in Dubai World Trade Centre’s Za’abeel Halls 4, 5 and 6 – a 15,000 sqm self-contained and exclusive space with a separate parking facility - the 10th edition of Dubai Sports World is hosting eight different sports disciplines: football, basketball, cricket, badminton, tennis, volleyball, padel tennis and table tennis.

The halls have been buzzing with activity since DSW opened its doors just over a month ago, with a number of top sports academies - the LaLiga Academy, IFA Football Academy, It’s Just Football Academy, Tennis 360, G Force, Professional Sports Academy (PSA), Deepika’s Badminton Academy, Shooting Star, and Champs Ahead to name a few – offering summer training camps to enthusiastic children.

The pitches and courts are also available for group bookings, and DWTC has implemented several regulatory protective measures at the venue, in line with government guidelines to ensure the health and safety of all individuals and staff on the premises.

Amazing facilities

‘‘It’s amazing here, because you can see the focus on safety as soon as you enter,” said Zenga, the man with 58 appearances for the Italy national team, including the 1990 World Cup at home during which he set the World Cup record of five consecutive clean sheets.

As a professional, he spent 16 years at Inter Milan and, post-retirement, he has managed teams in different leagues around the world, including Al Ain, Al Nasr and Al Shaab in the UAE.

“Dubai Sports World is amazing also because you find yourself in a place which offers you the opportunity to play so many different sports under one roof. Tell me one place in the world where you can go inside and play football, tennis, padel, volleyball, basketball… everything. If you take a look around, you will find such an amazing place only in Dubai,’’ he said.

Falcao – the all-time leading goalscorer in men’s international matches, and winner of four Best Player of the Year awards (2004, 2006, 2011 and 2012), as well as the Fifa Futsal World Cup Golden Shoe in 2004 and the Golden Ball in 2004 and 2008 – echoed those sentiments.