Qatar Airways, global main partner of FC Barcelona, promoted the launch of the football organisation’s first official supporters club in Kenya – Penya Barcelonista Mashariki (PBM).

A ‘Penya Barcelonista’ is a group of supporters who are officially recoginsed by FC Barcelona. They often gather to watch matches and celebrate their love of both football and the club.

The launch took place at a well-attended high society social event at the Capital Club in Westlands, Nairobi, befitting of football’s first major calendar event in 2014 by FC Barcelona President Sandro Rosell.

Since its beginnings, FC Barcelona has been characterized by being not just a football organization, but also a powerful force for globalization, solidarity, integration and social cohesion. Mr. Rosell said the launch of the supporters club in Kenya, continues FC Barcelona’s global appeal anchored on a commitment to universality. The Penya launch in Nairobi was the first Mr. Rosell has ever attended in his role as President of the club.

Currently, FC Barcelona has nine official supporters clubs in Africa: Nigeria (Penya Barça de Lagos Club); South Africa (Mzansi Penya Barcelonista); Senegal (Penya Blaugrana de la Casamance); Gambia (Sambou’s Barça Fans Club); Tangier, Morocco (Penya Barcelonista de Tanger); Tetouan, Morocco (Penya Barca Tétouani); El Jadida, Morocco (Association Penya Mazagan FCB); Morocco (Penya Blaugrana Aït Nsar) and Casa Anfa, Morocco (Gent Blaugrana d’Anfa).

The love of football in Africa, where some of the Club’s Stars have come from – Seidu Keita, Alex Song, Samuel E’too among others, typifies the wonderful unity and diversity of the club and the spirit of football globally.

Commenting on this, Qatar Airways Chief Executive Officer Akbar Al Baker said: “As FC Barcelona’s global partner, we are committed to creating joint initiatives with the club that help unite them with their fans. We are thrilled to be here today as we launch the first official FC Barcelona supporters club in Kenya.”

Through this initiative the airline places special focus on connecting with the club’s fans to spread the love of football to all corners of the globe.