As part of the activities surrounding the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup in Costa Rica, a CONCACAF coaching workshop for women’s football coaches got underway in the capital San Jose on Friday.
FIFA and CONCACAF Development Officers were present as the conference kicked off, along with representatives from Costa Rica’s Football Federation (Fedefutbol).
Male and female coaches from Costa Rica, Panama, Nicaragua, Honduras, Guatemala, El Salvador, Belize, Mexico, Dominican Republic, Cuba and Puerto Rico are meeting to share knowledge in the conference on top-level training, which will run until 23 March and is chaired by Mexican FIFA instructors Vanessa Martinez Lagunas and Andrea Rodebaugh Huitron.
FIFA’s Women’s Football Development Manager Mayi Cruz Blanco opened the event alongside CONCACAF representative Martha Godet, the organisation’s Development Director Hugo Salcedo and FIFA and CONCACAF Development Officer Julio Rocha. Also present were Fedefutbol Executive Committee members Jorge Hidalgo, Juan Carlos Roman and Victor Hugo Alfaro, President of Costa Rica’s Women’s Football League.
“These workshops would be impossible without this great team," Mayi Cruz Blanco said. "We are working extremely hard for women’s football and that is one of the priorities of both FIFA and our President, Sepp Blatter. At FIFA, we are looking to increase the participation of girls and women in football and there are many challenges ahead in order to continue that development across the world.”
Meanwhile, Victor Hugo Alfaro was enthusiastic about the opportunities for growth in the women’s game made possible by both FIFA and CONCACAF. “We couldn't have imagined these type of activities when we started working in football 20 years ago,” Alfaro said. “Now it’s a reality that women’s football in Costa Rica and in this region has an extraordinary future.”
The workshop, which features both theoretical and practical elements of the women's game, aims to contribute to the development of young female and male coaches, providing a platform for those trainers to share knowledge and extend the legacy of the U-17 Women’s World Cup in Costa Rica to the rest of the region.
Costa Rica 2014 kicked off on Saturday 15 March and concludes on 4 April. The competition is being played across four different venues: San Jose’s Estadio Nacional, the Estadio Alejandro Morera Soto in Alajuela, the Estadio Ricardo Saprissa in Tibas and the Estadio Baltodano in Liberia, Guanacaste.