Soccer gamers with mental disabilities, together with athletes from Particular Olympics Portugal, had been delighted to take part on the current Particular Champions League soccer event on Wednesday 8 February 2023. The event 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 knowledgeable accomplice. The soccer event showcased a improbable collaboration between the European Soccer Growth Community, Fundação Benfica, Particular Olympics Europe/Eurasia and Masterfoot whereas proving to be an pleasing 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 group from Particular Olympics Portugal. The ages ranged from 15 – 28 and as Particular Olympics oversaw the principles of the event, truthful competitors was ensured beneath the divisioning course of in order that groups of equal potential performed one another. The event 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 event 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 event 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 in the course of the event. The event 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 closing 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 event will probably be hosted by Bayer Leverkusen in June 2023.
Tournaments just like the Particular Champions League in Lisbon are the right instance of the facility of soccer to unite folks from completely different backgrounds. It was an awesome expertise and beloved seeing how blissful the gamers and the coaches had been in Lisbon.
Vicky Conde – EFDN
The group has come nearer collectively by way of 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 along with my associates has been nice enjoyable, and much more so carrying the SD Huesca package.
Noel Esteban (Huesca)
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