Bayern to open Shenzhen soccer school

Editor:Sharon Lee
Updated:2017-04-01 09:16:12

  The establishment of more soccer training schools with top overseas clubs will help to promote China's youth soccer training as the country strives to become a soccer power, according to soccer insiders.

  German soccer club Bayern Munich has announced plans to open a full-time soccer academy in Shenzhen, Guangdong province ! the testing ground since the 1980s for China's reform and opening-up.

  The club, part of German soccer league Bundesliga, held a joint news conference with the Shenzhen government at Munich's Allianz Arena on Thursday.

  The academy aims to bring Bayern's youth development knowledge and expertise to Chinese coaches and players.

  The project comes as the club is strengthening its presence in China and sharing its knowledge and values, said Jorge Wacker, board member for internationalization and strategy at Bayern Munich.

  "Chinese soccer has huge potential, and we want to contribute and thus expedite the evolution of Chinese soccer by sharing our soccer philosophy and experience," he said.

  On March 22, Bayern Munich opened an office in Shanghai to help China improve its training system for junior players.

  Xie Liang, a veteran soccer commentator with Radio Guangdong, welcomed the news of the academy.

  "There will be more advanced soccer elements, either in training or soccer understanding, from top overseas clubs, following establishment of joint soccer training academies," he said.

  Germany, Spain and the Netherlands have already proved the benefits of a strong youth academy system in recent decades, as they have made outstanding performances in the European continental competition and FIFA World Cup, Xie added.

  "Given Germany's success in top world competitions, thanks to its healthy and long-term strategic training, China is expected to learn more from its soccer experience and expertise," he said.

  China has drafted plans to develop into a soccer power. This has opened huge opportunities for foreign soccer clubs to cooperate with Chinese counterparts and investors in the soccer industry, especially in youth training.

  Spanish soccer club Barcelona teamed up with Mission Hills Group, known for its world-class golf resorts, to open a soccer academy in late February in Haikou, capital of Hainan province.

  "Barcelona has a great reputation for developing youth players. With the top professionals that are coming here, Chinese soccer is going to grow faster than ever before," said Brazilian superstar Ronaldinho, now an ambassador for Barcelona.

  Brazilian soccer club Santos also announced in early March that it will build a soccer academy to develop young talent and coaches with Sun Yat-sen Experimental Middle School in Zhongshan, Guangdong.

  English Premier League club Chelsea and Spanish La Liga club Real Madrid have already opened soccer schools with Chinese Super League teams Guangzhou R&F and Guangzhou Evergrande Taobao, respectively.

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