- 16 Member Associations, 10 from Europe and 6 from Asia, participated in two-day workshop in Istanbul
- Workshop provided experts and high-level presentations in development of sports infrastructures
- Costa Rica and Paraguay to host similar workshops, with more workshops to be held across the globe in 2019
The FIFA Member Associations Services Sub-Division invited 16 Member Associations (MAs), originating from the European and Asian regions, to attend a workshop in Istanbul, a city where Europe meets Asia, to exchange and interact with a group of infrastructure experts and members of the FIFA Administration.
The late October event, which is the first of many scheduled to take place between now and the end of next year, was hosted by the Turkish Football Federation at its state of the art Technical Centre. Two more similar events will be organised in November and December, first in Costa Rica and then in Asuncion, Paraguay.
The main aim is to enable football administrators across the globe to start a strategic reflection with experts in the fields of engineering, architecture and project management, aiming at developing sports facilities.
During the workshop in Istanbul, the various stakeholders were able to obtain some essential information on the need to build sustainable and accessible infrastructures that meet international standards, to help lead their infrastructure projects professionally and efficiently.
From natural and artificial turfs, which are essential for the training of new generations of players, through to seat installation and upgrade of facilities and their maintenance, several insightful modules were presented to the participants. Best practices from the region’s MAs were also shared with the attendees through videos and case studies.
During the two-day workshop, all participants agreed that these constructions are paramount elements for the professionalisation of football associations and everyone acknowledged the need to further develop this type of infrastructure for football to remain the most loved sport around the globe.
Some words from our MAs:
"Infrastructure is the backbone of football development. Thanks to FIFA and the Forward programme for bringing this workshop to Turkey and to allow us to share experiences with other member associations."
Alpaslan Kavas, Facilities and Investment Director, Turkish Football Federation
"We were given good advice from experts in different fields, which inspires us to improve our infrastructures and develop more in our region."
Kamran Valiev, Head of Infrastructure, Association of Football Federations of Azerbaijan
"This workshop has given us good ideas for the development of our new national stadium; it has been fruitful to learn from other MAs successes"
Adnan Dzemidzic, Executive Director, Football Association of Bosnia and Herzegovina
"It was overall a very informative workshop, it gave us all the necessary methodology we need to implement our current and future infrastructure projects. We look forward to pursuing our partnership with the Forward programme."
Suleiman Abu Afifeh, Project Coordinator, Palestine Football Association
"We were provided with exhaustive presentations and information, with lots of useful tools and information about how to best implement infrastructure projects and know how to construct headquarters, technical centres, artificial pitches, etc."
Maria Hamirad, FIFA Forward Programme Manager, Islamic Republic of Iran Football Federation