2019 AFC Grassroots Football Day a resounding success
Kuala Lumpur: 43 Member Associations joined the AFC Grassroots Football Day celebrations that took place across the Continent in May. Join the-AFC.com as we highlight the exciting activities that took place across Asia.
The Bhutan Football Federation saw an increase in participation with every passing celebration of the AFC Grassroots Football Day, and 2019 was no different as the festival took place in 19 districts in the South Asian country.
The larger community has also seen the positive changes and opportunities the festival has to offer, putting their trust in the Bhutan FF to look after a grand total of 2,025 boys, girls, special needs children and volunteers, who all learned important messages of fun, play, friendship and respect.
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Over 180 boys and girls under the age of 13 participated in mini football matches organised by the Bangladesh Football Federation (BFF) at the BFF House in Dhaka, where they were divided into teams of five.
After playing 10-minute matches, the children were served with refreshments, before receiving certificates of attendance from Mahfuza Akhter Kiron, an AFC Executive Committee Regional Female Member and FIFA Council Member and other BFF officials.
With the aim of creating relationships, friendships, team spirit and most importantly to have fun, the National Football Association of Brunei Darussalam (NFABD) organised a football festival for children between the ages of 6 and 10 on May 5.
The celebration was held at the Belait district, which is the largest district in Brunei but the furthest from the capital, and saw 128 attendees enjoy football activities. Under the new NFABD development plan, more emphasis will be given to remote districts like Belait to garner more local interests.
Football Federation of Cambodia held their AFC Grassroots Football Day celebration in two provinces, Kampong Speu and Kandal, where a total of 160 children were put through football drills in the morning.
Local coaches led the exercises and activities that included dribbling, shooting and a simple 5-on-5 match, so that the children would experience and test the skills and techniques they had learnt.
Divided into two categories, the U-10 featured in 5-on-5 matches, while the U-12 played 7-on-7, and were cheered on by their friends and family. The children were then presented with an appreciation plaque for their attendance and fairplay before the event came to a close.
The Iraqi Football Association worked with football academies across the country that saw 750 boys and girls participating in the AFC Grassroots Football celebration in Baghdad on April 15.
Held at the Al-Shaab Stadium, the children had the opportunity to show off their skills with local coaches advising on technical improvements, while another group of children played a friendly match.
The Korea Football Association held its AFC Grassroots Football Day in conjunction with its ‘Soccer for the youth of agriculture and fishing villages’ project.
Also known as the ‘2019 Road to Dream’, the project is aimed at providing non-elite players with opportunities to experience advance footballing activities, specifically the children in agriculture, mountain and fishing villages.
A total 150 children between the ages of 9 to 14 gathered in Haenam, Jeonnam Province for the football clinic, with the support of local leaders and athletes.
Thirteen football academies came together for the AFC Grassroots Football Day festival that included 20 children from the Kuwait Sports Club for the Deaf, the hosts of the event, on May 15.
A total of 200 children went through a whole day of activities, which were divided into eight training stations with different activities led and supervised by accredited Kuwait Football Association coaches.
Family members and teachers from the Ministry of Education also participated with the children in a friendly and respectful environment for all.
As many as 550 participants ages 6 to 10-years-old attended the celebration at the PKNS Sports Complex, as they were all treated to a series of fun activities, ranging from football-related activities to face painting.
The Football Association of Malaysia also launched ‘SUPARIMAU Charter’, which was formed for community and recreational football clubs, and football academies who are passionate in driving grassroots football and youth development.
Other programmes organised include the ‘Veterans’ Walking Football Friendly Match’.
This year, the Football Association of Singapore reached out to the special needs community for the AFC Grassroots Football Day celebration.
More than 120 participants from the Special Olympics, Children’s Cancer Foundation, Eden School, SportCares and NTUC Silver Circle participated in a fitness warm-up together, before moving on to the various stations, consisting of ball control, dribbling, shooting activities and other small-sided games.
The stations were conducted by FAS grassroots-certified coaches, along with members of the National Women’s national team, who mingled and played with the participants.
About 100 children from the ages of 6 to 12-years-old attended the AFC Grassroots Football Day at the Dushanbe Central Republic Stadium.
It was a day filled with different entertaining physical activities, such as relay races and various football drills. The children also had a taste of a competitive match when they played in a 5-on-5 tie.
The AFC Grassroots Football Day in Chinese Taipei was held in conjunction with a grassroots coaching course on two separate occasions in two cities, Changhua and New Taipei City.
The grassroots celebration was set up specifically for children from the age of 4 to 14 to learn the fundamentals of football while having fun, assisted by football teams from different schools.
On top of building on a strong grassroots foundation, the Chinese Taipei Football Association also aims to cultivate a coaching culture at the grassroots level.
A total of 217 children enjoyed themselves in a fun-filled day designed to explore their creativity through football, while 33 coaches benefitted from the three-day course that includes both practical and theoretical sessions.
Football Federation of Turkmenistan worked with the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) for this year’s AFC Grassroots Football Day celebration, benefitting over 200 children, including 40 children with special needs.
The Ashgabat Stadium was divided into eight training sessions, where a coach and two assistants were assigned to each station that included ball juggling, dribbling, exercises on coordination, passes and penalty kicks.
Parents who attended the festival were also encouraged to join as special activities were organised for them.
United Arab Emirates
The United Arab Emirates Football Association held three events for their AFC Grassroots Football Day, with a festival of 100 children from private and government schools enjoying various activities together.
Secondly, a friendly tournament opened to the public was organised to further promote the sport among the community, before they witnessed their women’s national team playing Maldives in an international friendly match.
Some 200 boys and girls from schools across Tashkent joined in on the AFC Grassroots Football Day celebration, which was organised by the Uzbekistan Football Association, who partnered with the Ministry of Education and Children’s Sports Development Foundation on May 15.
The young participants began by going out on the field to showcase their football skills, before being divided into small groups where they received advice on basic techniques and skills from a coach in charge.
They then went through various stations, including juggling, dribbling, passing and ball control to test their skills.
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