Second Grassroots Festival event held in Antalya
© LOC

In partnership with sponsors Ülker, the Turkish Football Federation (TFF) staged the second event of the FIFA U-20 World Cup Grassroots Festival in Antalya this Friday. The Festival follows a mini-World Cup concept and will take in all seven host cities of the FIFA U-20 World Cup Turkey 2013. 

Sponsored by Ülker, who are also one of the National Supporters of FIFA U-20 World Cup, this latest festival was staged at the Zeytinkoy Doguyaka Sports Complex. 

In the very first activity of the programme, the children had their photo taken with the official mascot of the FIFA U-20 World Cup, before getting the chance to showcase their talents on specially designed pitches.

Under the framework of the FIFA U-20 World Cup Grassroots Festival, grassroots coordinators from each of the host cities received training from FIFA and TFF officials last month. Then, in association with the Directorate of National Education, they selected a total of 1,700 12-year-old children and established their teams. These teams are now competing against each other on specially designed pitches, where players have the chance to show off their skills and participate in coordination-training exercises.

The children who earn the highest Fair Play ratings during the events will be given the opportunity to participate in the Turkey 2013 opening ceremony in Kadir Has Stadium on 21 June. The festivals will contribute to youth development in Turkish football, in parallel with a campaign conducted by Ülker since 2007. Around 8,000 children are expected to benefit from these grassroots activities.

Sponsored by Ülker, the project will continue with further festivals each Friday during the months of April and May. The Turkey 2013 host cities of Bursa, Gaziantep, Istanbul, Rize and Trabzon are scheduled to stage these events.