Football in Nicaragua
In Nicaragua, baseball is all the rage. Although football is not far behind in terms of the number of men and women players, it cannot (yet) compete with Major League Baseball, which is directly supported by the USA. Success has been thin on the ground but the association is hoping that the Goal project and the application of long-term plans will continually inject new life into football.
The first Goal Project
As the first project of its kind in the CONCACAF region, the training centre, comprising three pitches, was opened by FIFA Vice-President Jack A. Warner and association president Julio Rocha Lopez on 21 April 2002. The «Escuela Nacional de Talentos del Fútbol Negro Julio» football school is located in Diriamba, a town in the mountains approximately one hours drive from Managua. In the initial stage, various training courses were held for the coaches responsible for nurturing the talented young players brought together at the centre. Courses for referees also feature on the programme at the training centre. Everything is tuned into the long-term plans designed specifically to promote football. A medical service for the municipality of Diriamba has also been set up. 50,000 hours of lessons - that is the proud record in the twelve months since the opening. The climax so far has been a FIFA course for youth coaches conducted by world famous former Peruvian player, Teofilo Cubillas. In his inaugural address, Rocha Lopez said that Nicaragua now had a training centre in which young talent could systematically be nurtured from a very early age. He added that these youngsters should not only be coached to become top footballers but also as model citizens for society.
Use of FAP funds
Financing of Goal project
Training centre in Diriamba
Project approved
13 February 2001
Opened on 21 April 2002
Financed by
Goal USD 400,000 Government Land Total cost USD 400,000