By Abdelaziz Abuhamar
February 18 – Glasgow Rangers became the 2019 champions of the U17 Al-Kass International Cup, a football tournament organized annually in Qatar by the Al-Kass TV channel since 2012.
In the 2019 final Rangers defeated the title favorite AS Roma 9-8 in a penalty shot-out following an exciting 2-2 draw.
The cup is played on the Aspire Academy football pitches and supported by Qatar Football Association and Supreme Committee for Projects & Legacy.
Since inception in 2012, the event has grown to become a hallmark event in the busy annual sports agenda in Qatar.
The event, which has attracted club heavyweights like Real Madrid, Barcelona, Bayern Munich, PSG, Sao Paolo and other traditional world football powers, has become another football legacy-building event on the way to Qatar 2022 World Cup.
A number of upcoming footballers who are now active in big clubs in Europe started their competitive career in Al-Kass Cup, including Carles Alena of Barcelona, Moussa Dembele now with Lyon, Reiss Nelson loaned from Arsenal to 1899 Hoffenheim, Eddie Nketiah of Arsenal, Brahim Díaz of Real Madrid and his teammate Ashraf Hakimi who is loaned to Borussia Dortmund.
Japan’s Kashiwa Reysol came third in the 2019 tournament after beating the Aspire Academy 2-1 in the third place play-off.
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