What’s it take to be a Junior?
Milan Juniors – Targets the top players at ages 8-18. These teams will be representing the Milan Soccer School in the most competitive local and regional leagues as well as international tournaments.
MILAN – In Milan’s long illustrious history, children have always been at the center of numerous initiatives in the belief that sport and football can offer much in terms of education and health. This is why in 1999 the club started the Milan Junior project, a variety of events and initiatives geared towards involvement of youngsters and their families in Italy and the world over.
Illustrating the project at the San Siro were Adriano Galiani, club CEO, Laura Masi, the club’s marketing director, Filippo Galli, the head of the Youth Sector and Bruno Dominici, first team athletic coach and MilanLab staff member. The presentation’s moderator was Michele Di Cesare, director of “Il Nuovo Calcio”.The N.E.W. strategy dominated proceedings: the link between Network Milan Junior, Education with Milan Academy and Wellbeing with MilanLab Junior, all of whom have the end target of improving people through football. Obviously, the end targets are the children.
Achieving this objective means offering the children the best in terms of professional organization both in terms of education and wellbeing. The club has made significant investments in the Milan Junior Project as well as Milan Academy and Milanlab, considered world leaders in their fields. The experience of more than 13 years in the edu-tainment sector dedicated to young people, Adriano Galliani, Laura Masi and Filippo Galli represent a club that is particularly attentive to the young generation as can be seen by the club’s precise strategy programmed and multi-disciplinary “Young World”. They outlined the numbers behind the club’s worldwide network, developed through 166 partners involving more than 35,000 children in 46 countries around the world. Laura Masi explained the value of Network Milan Junior, coordinated by Michele Feraris starting from Milan Junior Camp in its 13th year of activity, which is developing an ambitious program of 369 weeks in 191 locations and went on to illustrate the strength of the Milan Football Schools with more than 155 affiliated clubs in Italy and 20 abroad including Curitiba in Brazil, Cairo in Egypt and Jakarta in Indonesia. These kinds of numbers as well as a staff of 41 between coaches, employees and collaborators, put the Rossoneri club in a worldwide leadership position on a grassroots level.
Then it was Filippo Galli’s turn to speak. Milan Academy grew out of the club’s desire to maintain levels of excellence in a school that trains and updates all of the coaching staff at all levels. The aim of the project is the development of a Milan methodology providing guidelines and technical support in the form of videos and other dedicated materials for the hundreds of people who work in the football schools affiliated with the club on a daily basis. The Academy works in the areas of education and research and development in nine areas: Technique, motor skills, Socio-pedagogical, medical, nutritional, MilanLab Junior, video, scouting and management with a staff of 24 coordinated by Fulvio Fiorin.
In the 2011/2012 season, the Academy organized courses in 25 Italian cities with the participation of more than 2000 coaches. This activity is unique in the sector as it’s offered free of charge and affirms Milan’s place at the top of sport’s development. In order to support the health management of the players as well as the spread of healthy habits, the club decided to offer the MilanLab know-how to projects aimed at younger players creating MilanLab Junior which thanks to a substantial database allows the subjects a constant health monitoring. Bruno Dominici presented some data.
18 MilanLab Juniors were active in the course of the last season running more than 4,400 tests on 2,200 children. The objective is to raise the number of football schools using the MilanLab Junior technology to 50. The following season will see an important initiative concerning the players’ families. All parents will receive a document entitled “Report MilanLab Junior” which will gather all the results of tests done during the season. All important information and variations will be highlighted making for a precious collection of information for their children’s’ wellbeing. This new initiative puts Milan at the avant garde of football quality.