Your kids could soon be training at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex in the same training program that produces the major starts of LaLiga, one of the most successful professional soccer leagues in the world. Disney World has joined forces with IdeaSport to host “The Institute FC,” a year-round soccer program for young athletes, coaches, and officials that will provide training from LaLiga current and former players, coachers, and officials.
The popularity of soccer continues to rise around the globe, and this multi-year agreement will help place Walt Disney World Resort’s ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex on the map as the place to find a holistic approach to soccer education with proven training and development for youth soccer athletes, developing them on and off the field, as well as training for coaches and officials. There will also be several events adn exhibitions at the complex each year.
“For the last 20 years, ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex has been a top venue for athletes of all ages and levels to pursue their sports dreams,” said Faron D. Kelley, vice president of Disney Sports. “As we continue to expand our growing portfolio of youth soccer events, we are excited to work with IdeaSport and LaLiga to provide this world-class development opportunity for youth soccer athletes.”
An open house will be hosted by LaLiga and Walt Disney World on June 1-4 at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex, and training and development is scheduled to begin in late June. In addition, multiple events and exhibitions are expected to be brought to the complex each year, including a tournament, on-site events and summer camps with current and former LaLiga players and coaches, visits from LaLiga legends and ambassadors, and more events to be announced throughout the multi-year relationship.
“This represents the coming together of two strong brands where passion, drive and authenticity meet,” said Javier Tebas, president of LaLiga. “This unique opportunity will help aspiring youth soccer players to learn the LaLiga style of soccer from our world-class coaches, players and officials associated with our league.”
LaLiga is one of the most popular sports leagues in the world. It has produced Europe’s top-rated club more times (18) than any other league, and it reached 2.1 billion viewers worldwide in the 2015-2016 season, according to Nielsen ratings. During the first round of the 2016-17 season, that number grew by 37 percent.
Disney World hopes that by continually having youth and professional training at ESPN WWOS it can help bring more families to the resort who might decide to enjoy the parks before or after their sporting event. That’s why we consider ESPN WWOS Disney World’s unofficial fifth gate.
Do you know a child or coach who would enjoy visiting Walt Disney World and receiving world-class soccer coaching and training?
Photo caption: (L-R) Former Real Madrid player Raúl González Blanco, Director of IdeaSport Planning & Development Eduardo Frisicaro, Director of Disney Sports Planning and Development Jorge Senior, LaLiga President Javier Tebas, Vice President of Disney Sports Faron Kelley, and former Barcelona player Gianluca Zambrotta. (Photo courtesy Disney. Todd Anderson, photographer)