“Why Footie First?”
We’re now training over 1,000 girls & boys in Mumbai and this is a question many interested parents and young footballers often ask us. So we thought we’d take this opportunity to respond here. These are 4 reasons why you should choose Footie First for your child:
1. Passion not profiteering
At Footie First, our objective is to make good football coaching accessible to ALL kids irrespective of financial considerations. This is what drives our #FootballForAll approach where children from every strata of society are welcome to be part of our academy, our family. Whether it’s our Social Responsibility Program where we give free coaching to economically disadvantaged children or providing need-based scholarships to outstanding talents or offering discounts to families with more limited means, the doors to our academy are open to ANYONE who is sincere about learning football. Our relatively lower-priced fee structure is geared to make Footie First’s football coaching programs affordable and accessible to as many children as possible. What’s more, surplus funds from our paid programs help us to sustain our need-based initiatives.
2. Child-centred not academy-centred
As children and parents who already train with us know, every Footie First training session ends with a collective cheer of “WE LOVE FOOTBALL!” It could easily have been our academy name. But the reason we have gone with “We Love Football” since inception is that it constantly reminds us of why we’re doing what we’re doing – coaches and children coming together for their love of the beautiful game. Our work isn’t about Footie First; it’s about developing a passion for football in the next generation while equipping them with the tools and techniques to be better footballers.
3. Better people, not just better footballers
Yeah, a sweet dribble or nutmeg is extremely gratifying, but what of the child who doesn’t stop trying even when her team is down 3 goals? Or the kid from a wealthy industrialist family celebrating a win with his teammate who is the son of a janitor? Can you place a value on the lessons learned from participating in a team sport like football? Playing football at Footie First isn’t just about achieving sporting excellence. Discipline, respect, punctuality, teamwork, sacrifice, dedication – these are some of the lessons that we continuously impart to our students through the medium of the beautiful game. On the football pitch and off it, children at Footie First get an education for life. As the great Dutch football coach, Louis van Gaal, said, “Before the player comes the human being.”
4. Pathways for progress
Whether a child is aged 4 or 14, there are always pathways for progress at Footie First. With teams starting off from the Under-8 age category, our various age group football teams include Under-10, Under-12, Under-14, Under-16 and Under-18 teams for girls and boys. Those who are keen on pursuing the sport further have the chance to play for our Senior Men’s and Women’s teams that compete in local Mumbai football leagues as well as tournaments.
All said, we won’t always make the right decisions. We will make mistakes along the way. We will fail – sometimes repeatedly. But our willingness to continuously learn and improve will always remain unshakeable. Above all, our intent will always be true. We are Footie First, and #WeWillAlwaysLoveFootball.