Manchester City Football Club has always emphasised youth development, and the long list of young players who have made their names in City colours over the years bears testament to this fact. Yet, it’s not just footballing Wunderkinder that Man City is concerned with, but rather, the empowerment of children worldwide.
QNET, as Man City’s official direct selling partner, has played an important role in this aspect of its development focus. And we have been extremely proud of the impact made by our many initiatives.
One important effort has been QNET’s collaboration with Manchester City Football School to develop young players’ skills in all areas of the game.
Facilitated by expert coaches and highly qualified English teachers, and located at the club’s Etihad Campus, the City Football Language School is a one-of-a-kind endeavour that merges football skills coaching with off-the-pitch language proficiency sessions.
The focus is holistic development. As such, on top of learning the game’s finer points, students are also guided on, among other things, how to handle press conferences and media interviews, football punditry and analysis and match commentary.
The latest is the Man City Football Clinic in Nigeria, where young talented footballers from disadvantaged communities have been given the opportunity to undergo world-class training by the Man City coaches and supported by the legendary former Nigeria football team coach, Johannes Bonfrère. The programme, which QNET and Man City also plan to introduce in Ghana, aims to help realise the potential of football’s future in West Africa.
Here are some of the most notable moments from the QNET-Man City Football School partnership:
QNET-Man City Football School Through The Years
Dimas, Gabriel, Maulana and Sobri didn’t have it easy growing up in a low-cost housing complex in Jakarta, Indonesia. In fact, the four had very little in the way of privileges. This is why they were over the moon at having been selected to join the City Football Language School back in 2018.
The quartet joined kids from around the world for two weeks of footie skills and English language training. And thanks to being presented with goodie bags packed with everything they’d need for the trip as well as shiny, new football boots courtesy of the QNET Indonesia family, the boys were rearing to go right from the start!
Incidentally, the four young Indonesian players were part of a larger cohort of 20 kids from around the world, which QNET helped provide an opportunity of a lifetime at City’s Etihad Campus.
The children from countries in which QNET operates took part in 30 hours of football and 30 hours of English language training as well as weekend excursions and behind-the-scenes tours as part of our 20th-anniversary celebrations that year.
The objective was to raise these players’ football skills and English proficiency and empower them to, in turn, raise others when they got back to their respective countries.
QNET has long been focused on football development in the African continent due to our partnership with the Confederation of African Football (CAF). And in 2019, we sought to take our efforts further by flying three talented young African players to the City Football Language School for two weeks.
The trio were selected via competitive processes in Ghana, Cameroon and Ivory Coast, and they all got to experience first-hand how Man City’s innovative syllabus promotes not just football and English skills but also team spirit, hard work and passion.
The talented three kids from Africa weren’t the only ones who headed to Manchester in 2019. In conjunction with renewing our partnership with Man City for a further five years, QNET empowered more children from under-served backgrounds to be guided that summer at City’s Etihad Campus.
Incidentally, the QNET-Man City partnership’s emphasis on youth development has extended beyond the City Football Language School and included coaching clinics around the world.
In 2017, for example, three coaches were dispatched directly from Manchester to deliver a world-class football coaching clinic for 97 underprivileged youths from the Jakarta Rusun Festival (JRF). That programme saw participants being schooled on many aspects of the beautiful game and, importantly, how to play like City players.
2023 | Further Empowering Young African Talent
The most recent QNET-Man City initiative was the launch of the Man City Football Clinic in Nigeria with the support of legendary football coach Johannes Bonfrère, who once helped the Nigeria football team bring home the gold from the 1996 Olympic Games. Twenty-six young and talented football players from disadvantaged communities, all under 18 years of age, have been selected from six states and invited to the heart of Ogun State to participate in a world-class training programme consisting of five sessions and an organised match to assess and finesse their capabilities.
“As a coach with a deep passion for nurturing young talent, I believe that this football clinic is a major step that holds tremendous potential for the future of football in West Africa,” said Bonfrère. “It provides a platform where aspiring footballers can receive extensive coaching, refine their skills, and develop a deeper understanding of the game. I am confident that this initiative will play a crucial role in shaping the next generation of football stars.”
Trevor Kuna, QNET’s Chief Transformation and Reputation Officer, also emphasised the company’s belief that sports serve as a valuable platform for fostering teamwork, discipline, and perseverance. “These are values that are at the core of our brand. That’s why we’re proud to have collaborated with Manchester City to bring this unique opportunity to the youth in Africa, regardless of their background. Our aim was to empower them to achieve their dreams and help them develop into confident, well-rounded individuals.”
The QNET-Man City partnership is dedicated to developing the future
QNET and Manchester City have collaborated on numerous initiatives over the years. Yet, there is no doubt that our efforts to transform the lives of young talented kids around the world are among the treasured highlights.