FIFA mourns Al Dabal and Hackmann
FIFA and the international football community are mourning the passing of Abdullah Khalid Al Dabal and Werner Hackmann.
Former FIFA Executive Committee member Al Dabal died in Abu Dhabi on 27 January after suffering a heart attack. Popularly known as Abu Khalid, the FIFA official passed away at just 53 years of age shortly after attending the Gulf Cup semi-final between Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates in Abu Dhabi.
Al Dabal made a huge contribution to the growth of the Asian Football Confederation (AFC). “He was a man who loved football and had a decisive impact on the progress and promotion of the game,” said FIFA President Joseph S. Blatter. “In recognition of his remarkable efforts and countless achievements, he was named an Honorary Member of FIFA at our 2004 Congress. While his presence will be deeply missed, his memory will live on in the hearts and minds of everyone who had the good fortune to have known him.” As chairman of the AFC Competitions Committee, a former FIFA Executive Committee member (1986 – 2002) and a long-serving member of the Organizing Committee for the FIFA World Cup TM (1990 – 2006), Abu Khalid was involved in countless top-level exchanges and advised many other top bodies in the game.
FIFA was also sad to learn of the passing of the president of the German football league (DFL) and chairman of its supervisory board, Werner Hackmann. The 59-year-old had spoken to FIFA President Joseph S. Blatter at this year’s UEFA Congress in Dusseldorf just a day earlier when he had been in good spirits.
Despite a seven-year battle against cancer and major lung surgery in 1999 and 2006, the former president of top German club Hamburg had been full of optimism and energy. His death therefore came as even more of a shock to those that knew him.