Ras Al Khaimah: It was a day for football fans to cherish. Five lucky Emirates Club fans got the chance to meet football superstar Andres Iniesta, receive a signed shirt and also watch him and the team train in Ras Al Khaimah after winning the Club’s Most Valuable Fan competition.
Rayan Mhanna, Masaru Tanaka, Lucy Murphy, Sufiya Sheikh and Mark Dolman were the entrants who attended team training at Emirates Club Stadium on Tuesday to witness the former Barcelona FC footballer train, after which they had the chance to meet him in person, take photos and receive an Emirates Club shirt signed by Iniesta himself.
The fans, who also got to tour the player’s dressing room, had taken part in Emirates Club’s Most Valuable Fan competition, which took place during the team’s first home match of the Adnoc Pro League season last month, a thrilling 4-4 draw with Ajman Club during which Iniesta set up one goal and scored another. Entrants had to take a photo or video of themselves at the match and follow @Emirates_FC on social media to have the chance to win.
Winner Lucy Murphy, who took her daughter Chloe, 9, along to meet Iniesta, said: “It was such an amazing experience for us to meet a living legend of football and it’s great that the people of Ras Al Khaimah have the opportunity to see such a talent on a regular basis in their back yard. Iniesta was so nice and accommodating; a really humble and genuine man.
"The Ajman game was our first time at an Emirates Club match and we really enjoyed it — the build-up, the atmosphere and the match itself was so much fun. It is a great family day out and we’ll definitely be back again to support the team. I would encourage other football fans in Ras Al Khaimah to do the same.”
Iniesta last month signed for Emirates FC after he announced in May that he was leaving Vissel Kobe in Japan.
“This is another very important step in my career after the long years spent in Barcelona and then in Japan,” World Cup and European Championship winner Iniesta said during the official ceremony in RAK.
“I am here to open a new page and I will do everything possible to achieve the best results with my team.
“I have always done my best with Barcelona and Vissel Kobe, and I will do the same here.”
Emirates Club play their next home match this Thursday, September 14, against Al Wadha at 5.30pm at Emirates Club Stadium. Tickets are available for Dh20 on Platinumlist.net.