New academy offers fresh opportunities
With the goal of ‘making football truly global’, FIFA has provided an enhanced level of development support to its 211 Member Associations over recent years.
The latest nation to benefit has been Bhutan with the completion of a modern new football academy. Located in Thimphu, capital of the Himalayan country known affectionately as the Land of the Thunder Dragon, the new Changjiji Football Academy complements the previous facility, also funded by FIFA in 2003, and belongs to a series of FIFA Forward projects from the first cycle (1.0) which also includes facilities at the Girls’ football academy at Gelephu, floodlight and four artificial turfs. Both the Boys’ Academy at Changjiji and the Girls’ Academy at Gelephu are operational, and the construction of a fourth artificial turf will be completed soon.
Aimed at upgrading the country’s footballing infrastructures and facilities, the projects are expected to lift the country’s game to a new level, prospects fuelling BFF (Bhutan Football Federation) President Ugen Tsechup with new ambitions. “It is a landmark achievement for Bhutan Football Federation,” he said at Monday’s opening ceremony of the new Changjiji Football Academy. “It is a small but important step towards building a world class centre of excellence for footballers.