Leading English Premier League Soccer Club Manchester City FC Signs Agreement With New York City Youth Soccer Clubs

Jun 14, 2010, 13:22 ET from Manchester City FC

MANCHESTER, England, June 14 /PRNewswire/ -- English Premier League soccer club Manchester City FC (MCFC) has announced a partnership with New York City-based Downtown United Soccer Club (DUSC) and Gotham Girls Football Club (GGFC).

As part of this new partnership, Manchester City's award winning Community scheme, City in the Community (CITC) will work closely with  DUSC to expand the City Soccer Initiative (CSI),  DUSC's  inner-city outreach  program.  This agreement is  the  first  of  a  series  of community initiatives to be announced by the club for delivery during MCFC's upcoming US tour and beyond.

Every week, more than  3,000 inner-city children participate in the CSI program, which uses soccer to teach critical life skills, tackle childhood obesity and help improve the quality of life in underserved communities.

As  well  as  enabling  significant  expansion  and  development  of  CSI's  existing  programs, Manchester City will grant ten scholarships per annum throughout the term of the agreement to allow underprivileged New York inner-city youngsters to join the DUSC and GGFC Youth Soccer programs.

The  partnership  between  Manchester  City,  DUSC  and  GGFC  will  provide  the  1,500  plus travel  and  recreational  players  of  the  New  York  based  clubs  with  support  for  their  child- centered approach to teaching and competition in soccer.

The  EPL  club  will  also  share  its  coaching  expertise  through  direct  training  sessions  with coaches and players, exchange programs in England, and a series of camps in New York City. The first MCFC camp will be held the week of July 19 on Randall's Island, led by Alex Gibson,  former  head  coach  of  MCFC's  prestigious  youth  academy,  which  has  produced more first team graduates than any other English Premier League soccer academy.

Commenting on the partnership, Gustavo Palomino, the Director of Coaching for DUSC and GGFC, said:

"This  is  a  very  exciting  opportunity  for  DUSC  and  GGFC  to  work  with  such  a  prestigious partner. It will be a privilege for our clubs, our coaches and, most importantly, our players to work  with  Manchester  City  and   will  allow  us  to  implement  a  fully  integrated  player development  structure,  from  youth  right  through  to  professional  level.  I  believe  this  is  an important step for both our clubs and for US soccer."

Assistant Coaching Director for Gotham Girls, Courtney Carroll, said:

"Gotham Girls FC is dedicated to providing opportunities for female players in the New York Metropolitan area to have a first class soccer  experience that exposes them to the global game. Our partnership with Manchester City, and more specifically the ladies' team, MCLFC, will  help  us  to  elevate  the  women's  game  in  NY  and  develop  the  girls  to  reach  their  full potential, both as players and as people."

Paul Jeffries, Director of City Soccer Initiative, said:

"The skill, energy and dedication that Manchester City has put into its award winning City in the Community programme is something that we have long admired. We are very excited to be able to utilise City's expertise to the benefit of thousands of New York's inner city children via our City Soccer Initiative."

Sarah Lynch, Managing Director of City in the Community, said:

"We searched long and hard to ensure that we found the very best partner for our ongoing community legacy in New York and believe we have achieved that goal in our agreement with  DUSC  and  CSI.  We  look  forward  to  a  very  successful  and  mutually  beneficial relationship over the coming months and years."

Manchester City is playing in the New York challenge as part of their pre-season summer tour of the US, playing Portuguese side Sporting Lisbon on Friday 23rd  July and the New York Red Bulls on Sunday 25th  July. For tickets and further information, please visit www.newyorkredbulls.com/tickets/new-york-football-challenge.

For further information please contact Lisa Kovitz at Edelman on 001 212 704 4546 or by emailing lisa.kovitz@edelman.com


About Manchester City FC (www.mcfc.co.uk)

Informally  known  as  "The  Blues"  or  "The  Citizens,"  Manchester  City  FC  is  an  English Premier  League  side,  founded  in  1880.  It  counts  the  European  Cup  Winners'  Cup,  two League Championship titles, and four FA Cups amongst its honors. The team plays at the City of Manchester Stadium, a spectacular 47,715-seat stadium which the Blues made their home  following  the  successful  Commonwealth  Games  in  2003.  Manchester  City  Football Club was taken over by the Abu Dhabi United Group in August 2008.

MCFC's  City  in  the  Community  program  was  founded  in  1986  and  will  celebrate  its  25th anniversary next summer.

City in the Community works constantly at the heart of local communities to improve lives and give people chances that they would otherwise not be afforded.

The scheme works with over 200,000 people throughout the Greater Manchester region and abroad every year delivering a range of programmes based on the four key pillars of Football and Sport: Development, Health and Activity, Skills and Enterprise, and Social Inclusion.

CITC has won numerous awards for its community programs, including:

2001:  Alex  Williams,  Executive  Manager  of  CITC,  awarded  the  MBE  for  his  work  in  the community

2007: North West Business in the Community Awards –  BUPA Healthy Community Award supported by the Department of Health

2007-2009: Community Club of the Year – North West Football Awards

2008-2009: Five Kickz awards, including Club of the Year and Coach of the Year

Kickz is a national social inclusion program designed to improve the lives of young people through the power of football.

About Downtown United Soccer Club (www.dusc.net)

Since  1982,  Downtown  United  Soccer  Club  has  been  organizing  premier  Travel  and Recreational  soccer,  with  clinics  and  academies  for  boys  and  girls  ages  3-19.   DUSC's inclusive program has a simple idea:  teach a younger player the skills that he or she will need, play them in a supportive team structure, make sure the emphasis is on fun and you will grow strong, cohesive and competitive teams.

City Soccer  Initiative  brings  DUSC's philosophy  to the  inner  city with  thriving  programs  in public  schools   in  New  York's  Chinatown,   Hells  Kitchen  and  Harlem.  CSI  is  currently supporting 3,000 children per week and plans to greatly expand with the support of MCFC.

About Gotham Girls Football Club (www.ggfc.org)

Gotham Girls FC is the only soccer club in the New York City area whose sole focus is the development  of  female  players.  The  Club's  top  flight,  professional  coaching  staff  has  a uniquely  positive,  child-centered approach  to  teaching  and  competition, with  the  goals  of instilling a love for the beautiful game, and helping girls reach their full potential as players and people.

SOURCE Manchester City FC