World Cup 2022: Khabib Nurmagomedov and Clarence Seedorf upstaged in Etihad Airways' video

Watch UFC fighter and former footballer joined by mystery guest in new advert

Clarence Seedorf, left, and Khabib Nurmagomedov are the latest in a long line of sports stars signing up for promotional World Cup content. Photo: Etihad Airways
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They are sporting stars in their own right, but Russian retired UFC fighter Khabib Nurmagomedov and former Dutch footballer Clarence Seedorf have met their match on board an Etihad Airways flight.

The duo are the latest famous faces to feature in a video to promote the six direct daily flights to Qatar by the UAE's national airline during the Fifa World Cup.

In the video titled Expect Extraordinary, which was released on Thursday, Nurmagomedov and Seedorf are seen settling into their business class seats when they overhear other passengers talk about a special guest on the plane.

"Have you seen who's on the plane?" one passenger asks.

"I heard he's very intelligent," his friend replies.

"Yeah, super powerful... and so fast," the first passenger responds.

While both sports stars playfully assume their co-passengers are talking about them, they realise their gaffe when another approaches the mystery guest and asks for a selfie.

Unable to contain their curiosity, they then press the button to slide down the privacy wall only to be met with their unusual co-passenger, a falcon — the UAE's national bird.

Etihad allows falcons to travel in its economy, business and first-class cabins.

Seedorf, 46, won the Uefa Champions League four times with a record three different clubs — Ajax, Real Madrid and AC Milan. Mixed Martial Arts champ Nurmagomedov, 34, is the longest reigning and undefeated UFC lightweight champion. He retired last year.

Starting November 20, the day the World Cup kicks off, Etihad will increase its flight capacity from Abu Dhabi to Doha to six a day.

Flight bookings from across the Middle East to Qatar have increased by more than 4,000 per cent ahead of Fifa World Cup Qatar 2022.

About 1.5 million fans, a little more than half the population of Qatar, are expected to descend upon the country for the matches later this year.

More information is available at

Inside Etihad’s all-new A350-1000 business class cabin — in pictures

Updated: October 06, 2022, 12:12 PM