Richard Ginika Izuora
The 2019 NPFL/LaLiga U15 Promises Tournament Most Valuable Player, Peter Joel has returned from his LaLiga training in Spain. Peter Joel helped his team, Delta Force F.C., to a third place finish at the 2019 edition of the tournament earlier in the year, travelled to Malaga, Spain last month where he trained with the Malaga C.F youth team.
As part of the trip, Peter Joel was able to enjoy very closely the Malaguista team and toured the La Rosaleda stadium and the city of Malaga. This trip which is the first time an NPFL U15 player visits Spain, reinforces LaLiga and NPFL’s commitment to develop grassroots and juvenile football in the country. Since its inception in 2017, the tournament has seen over 900 players participate and has also presented the opportunity for over 200 youth coaches to be professionally trained.
MVP 2019 NPFL/LaLiga U15 tournament, Peter Joel expressed his delight on having the opportunity to visit Spain and train with Malaga C.F. He said, “It has been my desire to play in Europe and it was a dream come true to have this experience. Although I spent a short time with the team, I learnt a lot and developed my skills especially in terms of my tactical and positional play. I also enjoyed exploring the beautiful city of Malaga and since I returned, my wish is to become a legend of Malaga CF”.
Speaking about the initiative, LaLiga Delegate in Nigeria, Guillermo Perez Castello said, “We want to thank Malaga C.F for giving Peter the opportunity to nurture and develop his talent. We hope that this platform continues to enable as well as encourage other upcoming youngsters across the world to pursue their football dreams”.
“We are once again delighted to have the opportunity to help in developing young talents across Nigeria. This country is very passionate about football and we will continue to aid its development through our partnerships particularly with the NPFL”, Guillermo Perez Castello added.
Also commenting, Chairman of the League Management Company, LMC, Mallam Shehu Dikko expressed his excitement with the outcome of the tournament and the impact it is making on young footballers in Nigeria.
“We are excited about the opportunities this tournament is creating for young players like Peter, the trip to Spain to train with LaLiga team, Malaga was a reward for Peter’s overall brilliant performance that helped won his team a bronze medal. We are committed to developing football from the grassroots as we believe this has a great impact on football development in the country. We’d like to thank our partners, LaLiga who have been supporting us on this project since its inception two years ago”.
The NPFL-LaLiga U-15 Promises Tournament which was modelled after the LaLiga Promises tournament in Spain was created to properly develop young talents using the LaLiga methodology and encourage NPFL Clubs to set up and maintain youth structures.