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UAE Pro League
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UAE Pro League holds 2021-2022 pre-season workshop

Waleed Al Hosani: Partnership between UAEPL and clubs is based on team spirit


Workshop reviewed changes to regulations of competitions, marketing, media and TV broadcasting, safety, and security


The UAE Pro League held its pre-season workshop for the 2021-2022 season amidst participation from representatives of all 14 clubs and match officials. The annual workshop showcased and reviewed the latest changes to regulations of competitions, marketing, media and TV broadcasting, safety, and security.


The workshop, which was held via video conferencing, was attended by UAE Pro League CEO Waleed Al Hosani and department heads. Al Hosani opened the workshop with a speech, welcoming the attendees and thanking the nation’s wise leadership for their unlimited support to the sports sector. The UAEPL CEO lauded the levels of communication and cooperation between the clubs and the UAEPL, insisting that everyone is keen on taking the football competitions to new heights.


 “We appreciate your involvement and participation and your keenness on the full professionalization of Emirati football, as well as providing sports content that meets the expectations of the sporting community in the UAE,” Al Hosani added.


The workshop showcased the updates related to marketing and commercial aspects and highlighted the amendments to the marketing regulations, which focus on increasing fan engagement, creating an improved matchday experience, engaging clubs and players in CSR initiatives, and introducing loyalty programs. The updated regulations also included providing wireless internet at stadiums and introducing smart initiatives and mobile apps.


The workshop also reviewed the changes made to the competitions’ regulations. According to the latest amendments to the ADNOC Pro League regulations, clubs can register up to 26 players born in or before 2005 under the categories: UAE nationals, Holders of UAE passport, Sons of UAE National mothers, provided the number of players under the UAE Nationals category doesn’t exceed 22 players.


In addition, new players registered for the first time under the category UAE Residence should be born in or after 2001 and should have a valid and continuous residence. Clubs should abide by the annual circular of the committee concerned with conditions and movements of players for the 2021-2022 season.


Moreover, clubs are now allowed to register 7 players in the matchday squad under the categories: Foreign Player, Born in the UAE, and UAE resident, instead of last season’s rule, which limited clubs to 6 players only.


According to the updated regulations, clubs should register a goalkeeping coach who must have at least the AFC “Level 3” goalkeeping certificate.


The circular issued last season was added to Article 21, which focuses on abandoned and postponed matches due to force majeure.  It included the following: The decision to cancel or not complete the season for reasons related to the Covid-19 pandemic will be made by the board based on a decision issued by the relevant authorities in the country; In case the decision to not complete the season was before the end of the first half of the season, a decision shall be made to cancel the season completely without declaring a champion or relegating any team to the first-tier, and the teams’ standings will not calculated for any reason; In case the decision is taken after the end of the first half of the season, the final standings will be calculated according to the last rankings before the competition stoppage, provided that all teams played the same number of matches; In case the number of games played by all teams is not equal, the final standings will be calculated according to the last matchweek in which all the teams were equalled in the number of matches played, and a champion will be declared, relegation to first-tier, and AFC Champions League qualification spots will be retained as well as all other consequences, whether financial, administrative or otherwise. In all cases, to avoid any doubt, points from any matchweek that has not been completed will not be calculated or included in the teams’ final standings. Decisions issued based on this article are final and binding and cannot be challenged or appealed before any judicial authority.


As per the clubs’ suggestions at the technical development workshop held in April, yellow cards will reset on the completion of the quarter-final of the cup competition, given they won’t lead to suspension (first and second bookings only).


The Competitions and Operations Department explained the changes to the regulations of the Super Cup, the Pro League U21, and the equipment and stadiums regulations.


The accreditation categories and their access rights, as well as the security and safety regulations, were also reviewed. The second session concluded with a review of the match protocol amid the Covid-19 pandemic.


The third session covered the media, TV broadcasting, and production regulations while focusing on broadcasting zones, pre-and post-match content, and procedures for using TV broadcasting facilities.

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