14 member associations and UEFA representatives meet at FIFA’s Paris office.
Collaboration on football development and FIFA FORWARD on the agenda.
President Infantino welcomed general secretaries to the French capital
FIFA President Gianni Infantino opened the first of three FIFA workshops with European member associations in Paris, informing General Secretaries and leading administrators of ongoing projects and inviting feedback and input as to how those programmes can be optimised for global benefit. The workshop – led by the Member Associations Europe team – presented the achievements and evolution of the FIFA FORWARD programme, discussed women’s football, detailed the latest Football 4 Schools projects and elaborated on opportunities presented by the launch of FIFA+ earlier this year.
“I’m really happy to welcome you here for your input on all of these projects that we are planning for the future because you’re amongst the most experienced and this can benefit the entire world,” said FIFA President Gianni Infantino. “This is the first ever meeting of FIFA with UEFA member associations in this new era in the city where the structures of football were created more than one hundred years ago, in 1904.” Elkhan Mammadov – Director Member Associations Europe – also addressed the Member Associations and highlighted its importance for making football truly global. World Cup winner Youri Djorkaeff and Chief Member Associations Officer Kenny Jean-Marie also attended the workshop.
Let’s hear from the participants: Yuriy Zapisotskiy General Secretary, Ukrainian Association of Football (UAF) “It was really important to have opinions, knowledge and an exchange of experience with FIFA and our colleagues on matters such as Football in schools, because we have had some experience in that. FIFA+ and the development of apps 7is also something on which we are trying to do something similar. It’s a pleasure to be at FIFA’s new office for these discussions.” Patrick Nelson Chief Executive Officer, Irish Football Association (IFA) “This has been a very good day for Member Associations. It’s our first time to get an experience of the FIFA Paris office and we’ve had some really wide-ranging discussions. We’ve spoken about FIFA FORWARD which is, of course, the significant FIFA funding programme which is available to all member associations. There have been a lot of interesting topics. As member associations, we only compete when there’s a footbakk between us. At other times, we cooperate.” Anne Rei General Secretary, Estonian Football Association “There have been very interesting discussions around the main investment fund of FIFA FORWARD and women’s football, an important [project] for our FA. We have used FIFA investment projects in capacity-building. Together, we have managed to increase the level of our top division, to hire technical inspectors for our clubs and it is essential for us [also] in order to improve our national team.”