Soccer gamers with mental disabilities, together with athletes from Particular Olympics Portugal, had been delighted to take part on the latest Particular Champions League soccer match on Wednesday 8 February 2023. The match was hosted by Fundação Benfica at their Estádio da Luz campus in Lisbon. The occasion was the primary in a sequence of tournaments that make up the Particular Champions League mission which is funded by Erasmus+ and options Particular Olympics Europe/Eurasia as an skilled associate. The soccer match showcased a incredible collaboration between the European Soccer Improvement Community, Fundação Benfica, Particular Olympics Europe/Eurasia and Masterfoot whereas proving to be an pleasurable expertise for everybody concerned.
Twelve completely different groups participated, that includes girls and boys with an mental incapacity, from AFC Ajax, Werder Bremen, Benfica, KAS Eupen, SD Huesca, Levante UD, NEC Nijmegen, Basis 92, Juventus, Bayer Leverkusen, Everton and the crew from Particular Olympics Portugal. The ages ranged from 15 – 28 and as Particular Olympics oversaw the foundations of the match, truthful competitors was ensured beneath the divisioning course of in order that groups of equal capability performed one another. The match was not all about soccer because the social facet was each bit as necessary. For some gamers, it was additionally the primary time that they had been on a airplane which made the match a really memorable expertise. The day earlier than competitors started, the groups gathered to eat collectively, play a quiz and take part in an ice-breaker paper airplane problem. It was an effective way for all gamers within the match to get to know one another earlier than competing.
All groups had the chance to play 5 matches which meant every participant noticed on-field recreation time throughout the match. The match completed with an award ceremony the place there was the chance for social engagement between the footballers and to have a photograph with the Benfica official mascot. After the ceremony, there was a ultimate gathering on the Museu da Cerveja the place all groups dined collectively sharing in a typical Portuguese dish: Codfish Cake.
The subsequent Particular Champions League match might be hosted by Bayer Leverkusen in June 2023.
Tournaments just like the Particular Champions League in Lisbon are the right instance of the ability of soccer to unite individuals from completely different backgrounds. It was a fantastic expertise and beloved seeing how completely happy the gamers and the coaches had been in Lisbon.
Vicky Conde – EFDN
The group has come nearer collectively by the journey and soccer experiences on the SCL, nice to expertise and see this up shut as a coach!
Job Bakhuis – Coach NEC
It is the primary time I’ve travelled to Portugal and having the ability to go together with my buddies has been nice enjoyable, and much more so carrying the SD Huesca package.
Noel Esteban (Huesca)
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