Football is very active in the UAE and even when I came here in 1977 one of the first of many super-stadiums was being built, this one for the Al Nasr Club in Dubai. The newly laid astro-turf was found to be completely unsuitable and was soon replaced with grass. I was more than happy to become the tenant of their nearby old walled football ground to create a 'super cross' circuit for my motocross club using about 50 truck loads of 'subhka' excavated from the new stadium to build all the jumps!
Of note was a splendid evening where the ex-England team manager Mr Don Revie OBE was invited to present prizes at the Dubai Netball Club's end of season dinner. Mr Revie, who of course had a somewhat colorful exit from the UK and was now coaching the the UAE national squad was heckled during his after dinner speech by a clearly less than sober member of the audience.
To his credit, Mr Revie, using a rather old-fashioned approach to negotiation and reconciliation invited the chap to step outside - and they did. Splendid!
There is of course a continuous push to develop football here as the national sport, and the government and owners of the clubs will no doubt do whatever they think is appropriate. I just wish national motorsport had a matched response and funding from the powers that be, especially given the huge government investment in motorsport infrastructure and strategic investments - and the desire to see an Arab driver in Formula 1.