GFF delivers elite football training to hundreds across Guyana

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More than 700 girls and boys across Guyana are receiving the benefit of the Guyana Football Federation’s (GFF) elite youth football development training as all regional GFF Academy Training Centres have now returned to action.

The GFF’s groundbreaking academy programme, launched in 2016 and the first of its kind in the Caribbean, is an elite, selective national youth development programme, which gives girls and boys aged between six and 19 a weekly, structured training curriculum that is anchored in the GFF football philosophy and delivered consistently across the nine Regional Associations.

The GFF delegated the running of the ATC programme to its Regional Associations as part of its efforts to build capacity at local level, supported by the pioneering GFF Members Financial Assistance Programme (M-FAP), which is unique in the Caribbean region and provides unprecedented levels of financial and logistical backing for regional football programmes.

“We are delighted to see all of the academies up and running again in a safe and secure environment after the significant disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic,” said GFF President Wayne Forde.

A session at the National Training Centre, Providence

“The ATC programme is the jewel in the crown of our administration, and we are determined to continue to invest heavily in supporting our members as they take up the mantle to drive youth football development across the country.”

“We know that the future stars of our national teams will be coming through these programmes, as they are already doing, from youth level to the senior sides,” he added.

The ATC programme is intended to enhance the quality of football development by exposing talented girls and boys to regular training sessions from GFF-certified coaches as they work towards the internationally-recommended target of 10,000 hours of deliberate practice that is required to develop elite players for professional football.

The programme, along with its grassroots component, is actively increasing the player population, improving coaching standards under the expert guidance and financial backing of the GFF Technical Department, acting as a talent scouting pathway for the national teams, and enhancing the administration of football at regional level.

It also provides a platform for regular competition among the Regional Associations.

“Many of the talented players participating in the academies today were scouted during the delivery of the Under-15 and Under-17 intra-association tournaments, which were made possible by generous sponsorship from Namilco and the Pele Alumni,” the GFF said. (GFF)

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