This is the football we like to talk about

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SAUDI GAZETTE

Great stars of the football firmament such as Cristiano Ronaldo and Gonzalo Higuain have been the protagonists of the recent Italian Super Cup Juventus-Milan, an event whose significance goes far beyond the boundaries of a football match at the splendid King Abdullah Sport City Stadium in Jeddah.

The Sharek online visa procedure for sports events has allowed to test a first cultural exchange between Italian and Saudi football fans and insiders.

The event received a lot of media attention in Italy, which represented an opportunity for active meeting and dialogue.

It was an occasion for Italians, and especially Italian journalists, to deepen their knowledge of a country, which they know little about.

The Italian Super Cup will be held in Saudi Arabia for the next two years and can boost the development of non-religious tourism and aid economic reforms.

A greater turnout of Italian fans and tourists is expected with the new laws and implementation of tourist visas.

Italians who had the pleasure of visiting Jeddah were mostly journalists and the staff of the Italian Series A Football League.

During their short stay they explored Jeddah, enjoyed a desert safari adventure and toured Balad- Jeddah’s most precious architectural gem.

They followed the path that from Bab Jadeed leads to Beit Naseef admiring traditional buildings and the charming Al Shafi Mosque, the oldest mosque of the city.

Along the way, they also enjoyed an exotic experience in the Majlis of an ancient Al Balad house, wearing traditional clothes as they tasted Arabic coffee and dates.

“It was exciting to visit Al Balad. We did not imagine Jeddah had such hidden treasures,” an Italian journalist said.

In addition to sightseeing, they did what they came for: interviewing locals and recounting to Italians a reality that has changed in a short time and not as closed and rigid as they expected.


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