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Martin Cockburn, Founding Partner - MCA Sports Law (Interview)

An excerpt from the interview of Martin Cockburn - a German lawyer who specializes in party representation in front of decision-making bodies of national and international sports federations (FIFA, AFC, UEFA, etc.), the Court of Arbitration for Sport as well as the Swiss Federal Tribunal.

Q) You've spent more than a decade now in the Middle East. Apart from football, they've hosted multiple events in athletics and other sports as well. How have you seen the development of sports in the region?

A) It has been a long journey. Our main activities are in football, but I think it's an established fact that the Middle East is a huge sports hub in Asia and also worldwide. Two out of the last three Asian Cups, which is the flagship competition of the Asian Football Confederation (AFC), have taken place here in the Middle East (2011 and 2019). I think this reflects the importance of the Middle East.

There are multiple other big competitions that take place here either on a yearly basis or these mega-events like the Athletics World Cup which happened in 2019. One can say that the Middle East is already an established big player in the organization of sporting events.

I think one trend which is happening now is also that there is a huge investment in the sports infrastructure here in the region. Obviously, in Qatar here we will get a lot of fantastic football venues for the World Cup but there are similar movements in other countries in the region here. The investment in sports and the sports sector from a financial point of view is a clear indication that the Middle East intends to remain a big player in the sports field and in the sports industry.


To watch the complete interview, please click here

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