THE first ISS Sevilla Football Academy in China, which was launched at Shekou International School in Shenzhen, has completed its student enrollment and will kick off its training program Wednesday.
Francisco Javier Garcia Jurado, the football academy’s manager, has revealed that plans for the academy’s establishment dated back to 2019. However, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the whole process was postponed.
“With the easing of pandemic control measures this year, the academy has successfully recruited three coaches from Sevilla Football Club (Sevilla FC). The academy has recently completed its student enrollment and will officially start training this week,” Garcia Jurado said.
The ISS Sevilla Football Academy was the result of the collaboration between Sevilla FC and International School Services (ISS), a leading international education organization with over 800 international public schools and thousands of educators worldwide.
In 2021, the two entities signed an agreement, stating that Sevilla FC will provide comprehensive advice for football activities taking place in international schools that are part of the ISS network. The partnership resulted in selecting Shekou International School in Shenzhen as the venue for the academy’s first location in China.
Sevilla FC, founded in 1890, is the oldest football club in Seville and the second oldest in Spain. It was recognized as the best team in the world in 2006 and 2007 by the International Federation of Football History and Statistics and stayed in the top 10 over the last 20 years. In over 130 years of Seville FC’s history, more than 1,000 players have joined the club, including some of the most famous players in the world such as the late Diego Armando Maradona.
ISS Sevilla Football Academy said it offers a top-level infrastructure for students to enjoy high-end training sessions in a safe and modern environment. Each coach follows Sevilla FC’s methodology, training and teaching players under the same values.
According to the academy, it offers a world-class youth training program and services throughout the year including 10 weeks training sessions, holiday camps, annual football match, training match, training exchange opportunities in Europe, coach training and customized training services for schools.
Football education has been a top priority for the Chinese Government, which has released numerous policies to support and promote the growth of the sport. The “General Plan of Chinese Football Reform and Development” is considered the most significant of these policies. Launched in 2015, this program aims to transform Chinese football from a focus on quantity to one on quality, by improving football talent training, advancing the development of professional football clubs and promoting football culture.
The Chinese Government has issued a range of related policies to comprehensively advance the development of football education. These include bolstering the promotion of campus football programs, cultivating community football and supporting the football industry.