Over 300 athletes, coaches and other beach soccer officials will travel to The Bahamas next April for the 2017 FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup, President of The Bahamas Football Association, Anton Sealey said. The Bahamas will host the world cup for the first time.
“It is a 16 team event, and The Bahamas automatically qualifies,” Sealey said.
“Teams come in typically to get themselves acclimatized anywhere from a week to two weeks in advance,” Sealey explained. The event will run for 14 days.
“We have 15 teams coming in with an average travelling delegation of about 20-25. Economically it will have a tremendous boost to our economy because the beach soccer players, and fans that travel with them, will come and enjoy themselves at the events.”
“Of course being a resort destination we expect that many of them will stay on after the competition to get some rest and relaxation. So we anticipate that we will have an impact from this for about a month.”
The official emblem for the cup was unveiled on Wednesday. It incorporates a series of design features that unite the positive uplifting nature of the tournament and the local culture of The Bahamas.
The emblem uses the shape of the FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup official trophy as the canvas and the vivid colors reflect the pristine landscape and culture of The Bahamas.
The Bahamas has successfully held several international sporting events in recent years including the International Association of Athletics Federations World Relays in 2015. Sealey said this represents a fundamental shift in the way the country is approaching sports.
“The future for sports and sports as an industry is huge,” he said. “Sports is a multi billion dollar business, we are ideally situated and we have the ideal infrastructure.
“With that said I think we will see the opportunities.”