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United by the Beautiful Game: The Power of Sports Diplomacy in World Cup 2026


Nasser Al Khori, Executive Director, Generation Amazing – Supreme Committee for Delivery & Legacy
H.E. Ana Irene Delgado, Senator, Republic of Panama
Ed Foster-Simeon, President & CEO, U.S. Soccer Foundation
Paul Rossi, CEO, SportBusiness Group; Senior Advisor, Concordia
Eglantina Zingg, President, Goleadoras

“When we build confidence and resilience among girls, they’re able to voice their opinions.”

– Nasser Al Khori

“We have to create the spaces to have more opportunities for girls.” 

– H.E. Ana Irene Delgado

“Sport is not just a game, but a learning platform.” 

– Ed Foster-Simeon

“Through soccer we were able to forge bonds of solidarity and exchange cultural traditions.”

– Eglantina Zingg

“More than anything else, sport is a passion for many people.” 

– Paul Rossi

Key takeaways & next steps:

  • There is immense importance in promoting diversity and inclusion in sports, including the need to create equal opportunities for girls and breaking stereotypes about what girls can achieve in sports. 
  • Sport is a powerful tool for education, teaching essential life skills such as self-confidence, teamwork, leadership, discipline, and resilience. 
  • Access to sports, particularly in under-resourced communities, is crucial for the physical and mental wellbeing of children. 
  • Hosting major sports events like the FIFA World Cup brings with it the responsibility to leave a lasting, positive impact beyond the tournament itself. This legacy can include infrastructure development, social programs, and educational initiatives undertaken by the tournament in the host cities of sporting events.
  • See this Generation Amazing report for additional insight drawn from a series of invitation-only conversations hosted at the 2022 and 2023 Concordia Annual Summits.