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Wednesday February 28, 2024

F4F programme chief praises Pakistan

By Our Correspondent
April 26, 2018

KARACHI: Vladimir Serov, Global Director of Gazprom Football for Friendship International Children’s Programme, has praised Pakistan’s procedure for the selection of its team for participating in the Football for Friendship (F4F) programme to be held this summer in Russia which will also host the FIFA World Cup.

“Pakistan made a wonderful and effective selection procedure this year — a vast playground of six working stations was created. All the skills of young footballers could be checked there,” Vladimir told ‘The News’ in an interview.

“Trainings, workshops as well as interviews with the children were organised professionally and efficiently. I also liked that young journalists were examined in practice — the children themselves covered the football events, wrote articles and met face-to-face for an interview. This is a perfect example of how elimination competitions have to be organised,” he said.

Every year young ambassadors of different nationalities, backgrounds, genders and physical abilities from all over the world meet, play together and decide how to promote friendship, tolerance and peace. “We are glad that last year Pakistan joined the programme. We believe that Football for Friendship will become a strong platform for fruitful relations with Pakistan Football Federation,” he said.

“It is very important that within the framework of the programme children from Pakistan have a chance to tell other participants about their motherland, traditions, customs and daily routine. They may share not only the key values of the Football for Friendship programme such as friendship, equality, fairness, health, peace, devotion, victory, traditions and honour, but also their vision of the youth sports development,” Vladimir said.

This time Pakistan will be represented by Farzad Mehboob (young journalist) and Sarang Hoat (ambassador). The organisers have also invited last year’s Pakistan ambassador Mohammad Yousuf as a young coach this year.

He said that participation of Pakistan in the programme gives a perfect opportunity to its young gifted boys and girls to show their abilities to the world. It gives them confidence and makes them mature, he added. “I believe that participants from all over the world will gain many leadership skills this season,” he said.

Vladimir said that F4F has strong and well-established ties with the PFF. “Each year we exchange ideas on various activities conducted in the frames of the F4F programme, we organise conference calls and share experience on working with our young participants.

“The young players and journalists maintain relations with each other even after the end of the forum. They chat in social networks, send photos to each other, discuss their everyday lives. This is the best indicator of the program’s success. It is a unique platform to make kids’ voices to be heard globally,” he explained.

He said that they had been working on the promotion of F4F programme for several years. “Pakistan is not an exception. Last year young ambassadors from this country (Pakistan) were really hard working. They were actively engaged in all the activities. I believe Obaidullah and Mohammad Yusuf will have promising future,” Vladimir said.