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It is the trophy that every player in the Premier League craves to get their hands on, but earlier today it was students and fans at Abu Dhabi Polytechnic that savoured their moment with the ultimate prize in English football.

The Barclays Premier League trophy is currently on a tour of the Middle East and following a trip to Dubai over the weekend, arrived in Abu Dhabi this morning as part of Barclays' 'Thank You' campaign.

Along with the opportunity to get up close to the iconic trophy, the ADPoly campus was packed with students enjoying a host of football related activities, including table football, FIFA14, and a walk-through gallery of the best players and managers of the Premier League era.

ADPoly was chosen by Barclays to showcase the Premier League trophy due to their role in supporting the local community and their commitment towards education and extracurricular initiatives in the UAE.

Mr. Khaled Abdullah, Vice President, Barclays Corporate Communication, told Sport360°: “The selection of ADPoly is what makes the difference, the way they use sports in developing their students is commendable.”

Those in attendance faced waits of up to 45 minutes for their chance to pose with the trophy, but that did not bother the young football fanatics, including 13-year-old Ahmad Jasim Al Bloshr - a student at Applied Technology High School (ATHS).

“This is a great opportunity for us football fans and I would like to thank Sheikh Mohammed Bin Zayed, my school and Barclays for making this possible for us students,” the Manchester United fan said.  

Although a supporter of United, Ahmad was not convinced his team will successfully defend the title, adding: “Arsenal will win. They are in top form at the moment.”

Meanwhile 13-year-old Faisal Ibrahim was clearly enjoying the event, particularly after defeating his friend at FIFA.

"I am really enjoying the setup here. I love the Premier League and have been supporting Manchester City for the past three years. It is our pleasure to have the trophy here in our school today.”

It was not just the boys enjoying the event; the girls were equally enthusiastic about the presence of the trophy.

Nouf Suhail, an 18-year-old student at ADPoly said: “I find this really interesting and it is a very good way for me to increase my knowledge about football. I am excited to try the football games here."

H.E. Eng. Hussein Ibrahim Al Hammadi, Director General of the Abu Dhabi Centre for Technical and Vocational Education and Training (ACTVET) was also present at the event today. 

“Many football fans dream of holding this trophy which is a grand symbol of triumph," he commented. "It is a great pleasure to offer this opportunity to our students who are ardent football fans.”


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