06 December 2010
Liverpool Football Club in Indonesia
It is surprising that Indonesia has not produced more home-grown football or soccer talent. There are plenty of footballers out there who have some Indonesian blood pumping through their veins. Yet, there are not a lot of footballers who have been born and raised in Indonesia who have gone on to successful world-class football careers. This is surprising when one considers that Indonesia is a country of some 240 million people and there are plenty who are avid football fans.
This may soon change, but soon being relative of course, as the Liverpool Football Club has indicated that it is going to enhance its presence in Asia, and Indonesia is where they are going to start this expansion. The growth phase will include the establishment of a permanent football academy. The Liverpool International Football Academy is part of the youth development section of the Liverpool FC.
Ian Rush, a Liverpool legend, has been in Jakarta in 2010 to conduct a football clinic. There is another clinic underway throughout this week and next. It is expected that the football academy could be up and running as soon as May 2011.
A permanent training and development facility based in Indonesia will ensure that there will be quite a few locally-born Indonesian youngsters getting the opportunity to show their wares to all and sundry. This may lead to Indonesians getting the chance to play football with Liverpool in the English Premier League and maybe other clubs throughout Europe. This is a really positive development for Indonesian football.
There are a lot of Indonesian youths under the age of eighteen. So, in terms of sheer numbers, the possibility of unearthing a global star is a very real one.
If soccer is truly the world game, then an Indonesian star or two on the world stage will truly reflect this claim.