As part of The PR Office’s ongoing work for HRH Prince Ali Al Hussein, the team was tasked with helping arrange a media trip and press conference in Amman, Jordan, to announce the appointment of legendary football manager Harry Redknapp as the Jordanian national team manager.
On Monday, The PR Office arranged for the media to visit the national stadium to watch the team’s first training session with Harry and assistant manager, Kevin Bond. Media in attendance included The Press Assocation and The Times, from the UK, key global wires, including Associated Press and Reuters, as well as national Jordanian and wider regional news outlets, both print and broadcast. In addition to watching the training session, one-on-one interviews with Harry took place, where he spoke in more detail about his plans for football in Jordan, as well as his relationship and respect for Prince Ali.
On Tuesday, the press conference took place, with attendance from more than 40 news outlets. The entire conference was broadcast live across the Middle East and saw Prince Ali introduce Harry and his team and share his hopes for the next two World Cup qualifiers against Bangladesh and Australia.
Prince Ali spoke passionately about the importance of these two fixtures, but also of how excited he was for Harry’s arrival:
“It is very rare to have people of this class. I spoke to many people but immediately it became evident Harry is the man for the job. He is a world-class manager and he has proven that throughout his career. To have him here is a wonderful opportunity for us in Jordan.”
Of his appointment, Harry said:
“If we can win the games and everyone is happy I would love to come back. If we don’t beat Bangladesh maybe the prince will put me on the plane home. We have to make sure we win, at the moment it’s two games but we’ll look to the future after these two games. There’s nothing I would like more than to be successful in these games.”
As part of the trip, it was important that we made media aware of Prince Ali’s wider role in football and Jordanian society. To that end, we also arranged a visit to the AFDP (Asian Football Development Programme) – an initiative His Royal Highness set up in 2012. The organisation works with NGOs around Asia to use football for good. Ranging from tackling sex trafficking in Cambodia, to nutritional requirements in Burma, the AFDP is a fantastic organisation. At the headquarters, it was clear to see the level of global support for Prince Ali and the programme, with famous signed shirts from footballers all over the world dedicating their support.