Dubai: Football fans around the globe will witness a stunning new trophy lifted by the champions of the AFC Asian Cup UAE 2019 at the iconic Zayed Sports City Stadium in Abu Dhabi on February 1, 2019.
The new trophy was unveiled by Asian Football Confederation (AFC) President Shaikh Salman bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa and former UAE international Zuhair Bakheet during the glittering AFC Asian Cup UAE 2019 Final Draw at the Burj Khalifa.
Designed and made by world renowned silversmiths Thomas Lyte of London, the new trophy eloquently communicates the powerful spirit of football’s second oldest continental football competition.
Thomas Lyte craftsmen have designed and made globally some of the most iconic sporting trophies and the new AFC Asian Cup took these makers over 450 hours to craft, passing through the hands of 12 different craftsmen.
AFC President Shaikh Salman said: “Since 1956 we have had the same trophy and in keeping with the new and exciting future of the competition, the AFC decided to commission a new trophy, one that captures the excitement and drama of the tournament ahead.
“The AFC has trusted Thomas Lyte for all of our trophy designs since 1997 and I am happy to see this relationship flourish with this magnificent trophy which is fitting of the crowning jewel of the AFC’s competitions.”
The new trophy is revolutionary in design and stands at an impressive 78cm high and 42cm wide and is crafted from 15 kilogrammes of Hallmarked Sterling Silver bullion. When the trophy is finally uplifted the trophy plinth separates and contains the rich legacy of previous winners.
Kevin Baker, CEO and Founder of Thomas Lyte, said: “We were honoured to design and craft such a landmark trophy in sport and football. The new trophy depicts the five regions of the AFC organically entwined in harmony and competition.
"While new craft techniques were developed, this modernist new design employed traditional silversmithing skills, including 230 hours of hammering flat sheets of silver into this organic shape”.