Omani football fans were taken to their team’s group stage matches in the AFC Asian Cup on buses provided by Oman Arab Bank.

The bank worked with the Oman Football Association to take over 150 fans to support the team in the United Arab Emirates, with Oman’s three group stage matches held on January 9, 13 and 17.

The three buses carried Oman Arab Bank branding to reflect the organisation’s sponsorship.

Head of Corporate Communication at Oman Arab Bank, Hilal Al Siyabi, said: “Football is a sport that is very near and dear to the hearts of the people of Oman.

“As a prominent bank in the country, we are honoured to be in a position to sponsor the transportation to take fans to support the National Football Team in their upcoming matches.”

Oman lost their opening group stage match, with Uzbekistan scoring late at the Sharjah Stadium to win 2-1.

Japan also proved too tough for Oman, wining 1-0 on 13 January at the Zayed Sports City Stadium in Abu Dhabi, while Oman’s final group stage match, against bottom-of-the-group Turkmenistan, saw them win 3-1 at the Mohammed bin Zayed Stadium and advance to the last-16, where they face Iran on Sunday.

“On behalf of OAB, I would like to wish each of the players the very best of luck in their upcoming matches,” Al Siyabi added.

One of Oman’s leading banks, OAB has previously sponsored the Ministry of Housing football tournament, and the sponsorship of fan buses to watch the national team in the Asian Cup represents another aspect of the bank’s relationship with football.

Al Siyabi explained: “Doing so not only helps further promote the sport but also helps us engage with fans and the community on a more personal level.”