15 September 2021, 12h22


"This project is innovative and the conditions are brilliant", confirmed Simão Sabrosa. Approximately with 200 youngsters, the Benfica Soccer School in Kiev, coordinated by Alfredo Almeida, was visited by the club's director of international relations, and two former red players, Rui Águas and Valdo, on September 14.

The Soccer School in the capital of Ukraine started in 2019, with more or less 200 athletes divided in 10 teams and playing in 12 competitions.

"The conditions are amazing. I already knew the project because I was with Alfredo [Almeida] last June in Lisbon. Approximately 200 kids training, under Alfredo Almeida’s methodology, not only to the players, but also the coaches he trains. He shares the values of Benfica, the importance of respecting the teammate and wearing the jersey. This project is innovativethe conditions are brilliant, the complex is huge, it could be called 'mini-Seixal'", declared the director of international relations to BTV.

Simão Sabrosa

"We got to congratulate Alfredo and Benfica international for the excellent work. It’s a big pleasure to be here with Rui Águas and Valdo, two Benfica legends. It’s good to be here with children who have the dream to play at Benfica", added Simão Sabrosa.

Alfredo Almeida

"We are in Kiev, but this is Benfica!"

Alfredo Almeida, coach and coordinator of the Benfica Soccer School in Kiev, outlined the work done in the Ukrainian capital.

"We started in 2019 and we are about to start our third season. There are a few key points for us. It’s not only about winning or playing. It’s about the values, about what it means to wear Benfica, to feel Benfica, to understand what the red jersey is. These are the key values! Not only in the coaches training, as they must transmit it to the players too. After that, our methodology. We want the coaches and the parents to think different, and this is felling Benfica, to know what it means to represent Benfica, what Benfica really is", highlighted Alfredo Almeida.

Simão, Rui Águas e Valdo

"I hope to have more Ukrainians at Benfica in the future. There are quality and competence. At this moment, I’m happy and proud to have approximately 200 youngsters divided in 10 teams, playing every week in twelve competitions, with 17/18 matches per week. That’s a great and strong dynamic with Benfica’s identity", he underlined.

"The kids already feel Benfica. They talk about Benfica games on the weekend, about the players’ names, the coach… We are in Kiev, but this is Benfica, and that is vital", added Alfredo Almeida.

Valdo e Rui Águas

Rui Águas and Valdo, former Benfica players, were also delighted with the conditions offered to the players...

"My opinion couldn’t be better. Firstly because of the facilities we visited, which are incredible. At the same time, it’s interesting to know how we can have a project associated to the club, so far away from Portugal", said Rui Águas.

"The project is wonderful, fantastic. I never thought to find a Benfica project on this scale in Ukraine. The quality of the facilities and the joy of the kids… Benfica deserves congratulations, the people leading this project deserve it too", affirmed Valdo.

Text: Marco Rebelo
Photos: Isabel Cutileiro / SL Benfica
Last update: Wednesday, September 15, 2021


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