Rangoon (Mizzima) – A football representative of Digicel mobile phone network provider and former Liverpool player, John Barnes, who is currently in Burma to provide football training to children, says he admires their soccer talent.
|Former Liverpool player John Barnes, right, at a press conference on Wednesday, September 19, 2012, in Rangoon. Photo: Lin Ko Ko Htet / Mizzima|
Raising young children to be great soccer players depends on not only their talents but also discipline and training, he said.
“That also depends on whether they get opportunities to play or not,” he said. “According to the ability of Burmese young people I saw yesterday, they are as talented as other children from all around the world. I think they have their own natural abilities.”
John Barnes, who arrived in Burma on Monday, will provide football-related training to 50 selected U-12 players and 40 coaches during his four-day visit.
Wikipedia, in a biographical note on its website, said: “Barnes played in the 1990 title winning side at Liverpool and scored 22 league goals from the left wing – his personal best for the club. Barnes was voted Football Writer's Player Of The Year, and expectations from England manager Bobby Robson were also high, seeing Barnes as a key component in the build up to Italia 90.
“Team mate Peter Beardsley has since said Barnes at the end of the 1980s was "The best player I ever played with, bar none. For three or four years at the end of the ’80s, John was possibly the best player in the world."
The Jamaica-based Digicel has signed a three-year Memorandum of Understanding with Myanmar Football Federation for sports for the development of the youth in Burma. The company will support the Burmese men’s national team, women’s national team, U-12, U-14 and U-16 teams and the Myanmar National League.
Details of the nature of the support were not made clear.
Vanessa Slowey, the CEO of Digicel Asia Pacific, declined to provide details when asked by journalists.
“Digicel has signed a three-year agreement with the Myanmar Football Federation. But we can’t disclose the details of the agreement,” she told Mizzima.