The Arsenal-run soccer clinic for the Airtel Rising Stars has kicked off in Accra, Ghana.The week-long specialized clinic that has brought together twenty-four (24) talented youngsters from Nigeria, Zambia, Uganda and hosts ? Ghana is aimed at enhancing the technical skills of the young boys and girls who were selected during Airtel Rising Stars regional and national programs in their respective countries.

In addition to the selected starlets, the Ghanaian team that recently won the inaugural girls trophy at the Airtel Rising Stars Africa Championships will participate in the soccer clinic on a wild card entry basis.

The clinic which will be managed by certified coaches from Arsenal Soccer Schools program will offer the selected youngsters with a once in a lifetime opportunity to experience the ?Arsenal Way of playing?. The courses are based on the same principles used at the club?s training ground, developing young player technical skills and passion for the game to ensure the players? potential is realized.

The venue of the clinic ? the Lizzy Sports Complex ? is synonymous with the world class talent. The complex was founded by renowned and former Ghanaian-born French footballer, Marcel Desailly whose illustrious playing career saw him win the FIFA World Cup with France in 1998 and the European championship in the year 2000. Marcel Desailly?s career also saw him play for Italian giants AC Milan and current European club champions Chelsea FC.

Commenting on the latest phase of the Airtel Rising Stars program, Airtel Ghana Chief Executive Officer Phillip Sowah said:  ?We are delighted to partner with the Arsenal football club in this initiative. The club is well regarded for giving opportunities to young and talented players across the globe. It is befitting that the emerging talent from our rising stars program receive top drawer expertise and guidance in achieving their optimal??

The partnership with Arsenal is part of a three year sponsorship and mobile content agreement signed in July that allows select Airtel operations to tap into the football club?s deep reservoir of technical resources and sports marketing expertise.

Ghana?s Deputy Minister for Youth and Sports, Dr. Edward Omane-Boamah commended Airtel for the Airtel Rising Stars initiative and urged other corporate bodies to partner government in ensuring the growth of sports. Dr. Omane-Boamah said: ?I would like to thank Airtel for this wonderful initiative to give this opportunity to the young boys and girls; as young people, you should also know that with hard work and discipline, you can attain the level of success that some of our African stars have chalked in Europe and across the world?.

At the event were Airtel Rising Stars Ambassadors and former Black Stars of Ghana players Sammy Kuffour, Nii Odartey Lamptey and Tony Baffoe.

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