Thursday, July 25, 2024

Zambia Hosts FIFA President Gianni Infantino for Historic Visit

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President Hichilema and FIFA President Mr. Gianni Infantino at State House

In a significant event for Zambian football, President Hakainde Hichilema welcomed FIFA President Gianni Infantino to State House yesterday. The visit marked an opportunity to express Zambia’s gratitude for FIFA’s ongoing support, particularly in technical and infrastructure development.

President Hichilema emphasized the universal appeal of football, highlighting its role not just as a sport but as a catalyst for health and business opportunities. He advocated for FIFA to introduce business training programs for footballers, aiding them in managing their earnings post-retirement or in the event of injury.

The Zambian President also addressed the importance of resolving management and administrative disputes within football through dialogue, urging FIFA to continue fostering harmony among football stakeholders.

During the visit, a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed between FIFA and the Football Association of Zambia (FAZ). This agreement will lead to the establishment of a FIFA Technical Centre in Zambia, a project set to enhance the country’s football infrastructure and capacity-building initiatives for coaches and administrators.

President Hichilema expressed optimism about future FIFA engagements and interventions, which are expected to further bolster sports development in Zambia. The event underscored the collaborative spirit between Zambia and FIFA, aiming to nurture the next generation of football talent in the country.

Additionally, FIFA President Infantino will inaugurate the newly funded FIFA accommodation center, made possible through the FIFA Forward program. This $300,000 investment will significantly reduce accommodation costs for junior and women’s teams, facilitating better preparation for international tournaments.

The FIFA Forward program, launched in 2016, is the largest sports development initiative globally. By the end of 2026, FIFA aims to have invested $5 billion worldwide through this program.

Infantino’s visit also includes attending a commemoration of the Gabon Air Disaster at the Memorial site and participating in an exhibition match for U15 girls at the Barcelona Academy.

This visit highlights the strengthening ties between FIFA and Zambia, promising a brighter future for Zambian football.

The Copper Queens were acknowledged by FIFA president Gianni Infantino for being a trailblazer in the women’s game.
FIFA President Mr. Gianni Infantino
LUSAKA, ZAMBIA – JUNE 12: FIFA President Gianni Infantino meets with Football Association of Zambia President Andrew Kamanga after arriving at Kenneth Kaunda International Airport ahead of his visit to Zambia on June 12, 2024 in Lusaka, Zambia. (Photo by Alvin Mwewa/FIFA)
President Hichilema and FIFA President Mr. Gianni Infantino at State House

 

13 COMMENTS

    • The minister of Sport is a big mess. He has meddled in FAZ affairs and brings the confusion. He still believes his friend can come back to FAZ. Truth be told… IT WILL NOT HAPPEN! Let Kamanga continue to clean up the mess left by the previous administration. THIEVES WILL NOT BE ALLOWED AT FOOTBALL HOUSE. NEVER AGAIN.!!!
      Infact follow them and let them account for their actions. Umulandu taubola!!!!

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  1. The passion for football cuts across and that’s the reason it’s referred to as a uniting factor. However, unlike in developed economies, football in developing countries can’t sustain itself. Due to the passion for the sport by the general population governments spend a lot of money to fullfil the desire by citizens to watch football. Levy Mwanawasa stadium alone cost US$65M, compare that to the $300,000 that Infantino has announced as a FIFA investment in Zambian football! It’s nothing, it can’t even meet the cost of sending the team to the AFCON. So government is a serious stakeholder in football must have a say in how football is run especially when huge public resources are misused.

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  2. Why should government continue to pay Avram Grant $15,000 per month in the face of the revelations by Fashion Sakala?

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  3. He is coming to check on how you are messing in the football affairs of Zambia. You thought you would do the same thing in football as you are doing to your political opponent’s political parties. Indeed this UPND is an all round political and economic failed project of Hakainde. We hope he won’t tarnish the good name of his tribe by the end of his failed five year term.

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    • You are so bitter and upset like a hungry lion. Oh my goodness, will it click in your head that PF lost elections and Lungu will not come back to rule Zambia again. A president who is quiet when when people he is expected to protect are being gassed. He says to president HH, “if you have nothing to say, keep quiet. I used to keep quiet in my tenure.” Stop being look ahead for change for the good of the nation.

  4. His term will only fail if he does not address the nation on the Zesco issue
    Football brings people together maybe
    Zesco is slowly destroying it YET no one seems to care

  5. Zambia’s men footbal team, like Nigeria’s, now has no chance of going to the next world cup. Goodbye to World Cup 2026, unless Infantino helps sort out our problems (tribalism in football). The coaches in the clubs are tribal, that is why only Lubemba players and a scattering of their eastern cousins make it to the national team, because they play regularly. The Lubemba players lack physique and a hard work ethic. Bring in players from the former British North western Rhodesia (BNWR), who are physically and mentally strong. Look at the women’s team: the Kudananji’s, Mweemba’s, Musesa’s are all from BNWR, look how hard working and physically strong they are. Don’t just condemn me, there is a problem in the men’s team so time to look for solutions.

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  6. Politicians just love to cling to the popularity of soccer. Yes its called populism. I dont think HH even knows a single Chipolopolo player. Its like the Pope meeting Chris Rock today. He wants to feed on the comedian’s popularity

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