CONCACAF President Jeffrey Webb (left) and Ludwig Balentin, President of the Bonaire Football Federation, on March 8, 2014.
KRALENDIJK, Bonaire – On his first trip to Bonaire, CONCACAF President and FIFA Vice President Jeffrey Webb urged local football authorities to focus on the development of junior players and coaches.
Nearly one year since the Dutch territory joined CONCACAF as an Associate Member, the Bonaire Football Federation hosted the confederation’s Grassroots Development course at the Kralendjik Sports Complex.
“CONCACAF is pleased to support Bonaire in its efforts to develop the game,” said President Webb at a press conference on Saturday.
Webb advised youth coaches and association officials that a commitment to youth was essential.
“Let us invest in human capital and let us invest in you,” expressed Webb. “It is only through development that we can raise the standards of the game.”
Bonaire Football Federation President Ludwig Balentin was in agreement with that sentiment.
“We need to train the coaches, so they can train the children correctly,” he said. “Our hope is that in the future we can become a full member to CONCACAF and compete regionally.”
More than 30 coach-educators took part in the two-day sessions aimed at developing coaching and organizational skills for those working in football with children aged six to twelve.
Participants spent time in classroom lectures and out on the field putting theory into practice with instructors Anton Corneal (Trinidad & Tobago) and Neal Ellis (USA).
The grassroots course concluded Sunday with a Football Festival for in excess of 100 local children.