Zimbabwe becomes the second African nation after Morocco to sign an agreement to launch a series of sports projects rolled out by Real Betis and the Club’s foundation. Zimbabwean agency Athletes Sphere Management (ASM) has clinched the mega deal as Real Betis seeks to expand its brand throughout the world. United States, Mexico, China, Morocco and now, Zimbabwe are all beneficiaries of the expansion aimed at educating and transmitting the institution’s values through football to young footballers.
ASM, the second Betis Academy on the African continent, housed in Harare, in partnership with Real Betis and the Real Betis Foundation with the aim of developing grassroots football on the region will start operating from October this year as long as the COVID-19 pandemic allows for the move.
Real Betis and its Foundation have been working for years with the youngest footballers in Seville through its local Academy and have been developing over the last seasons an expansion plan, materialized with the launch of several sports programs all around the globe: Reno, Fresno, Lemoore (United States), Ciudad de Mexico, Toluca, Monterrey, Guadalajara (Mexico), Fez (Morocco) and Wenzhou (China).
“Real Betis is one of the most historical football clubs in Spain and, without a doubt, one of the most beloved ones. Not only because of that historical character, but also because of its idiosyncrasy and values, its unshakable faith, its ability to excel and the joy of its people. And those values are precisely what we try to transfer in all our international projects: educating from football, transmitting all the values that surround the Betis brand and doing it with the same methodology that we use within our youth teams”, declared Ramón Alarcón, Real Betis’ General Director of Business.
Rafael Muela, General Manager of the Real Betis Foundation, expressed excitement on having projects of this nature not only in support from a sporting point of view, but also as a social support system for communities around the globe.
“In this exceptional situation, agreements like this one make us especially excited and fill us with optimism, since they show that both the Real Betis Balompie Foundation and its partners around the world, keep moving so that the youngest population can keep enjoying football”.
Gerald Sibanda, President and CEO of ASM, has also commended the agreement saying the advent of this global partnership will not only create endless opportunities for Zimbabwe but help expand the Real Betis Balompie’s brand.
“I am extremely happy for this global partnership, bringing world class community opportunities to Zimbabwe. From ASM, we are looking forward to help growing Real Betis Balompie’s brand in the region and seeing great football projects being birthed through this partnership. It is with great honour and I am so pleased to lead the new Betis Academy Zimbabwe. My blood is now green and white”, said the seemingly excited Sibanda.
Marcos Pelegín, Managing Director for Southern Africa, representing LaLiga had this to say:
“One of LaLiga’s most important stated objectives is to support football growth around the world. We are really excited for Real Betis and for the young Zimbabwean football players that will enrol in this program. Seeing how one of our Spanish clubs enlarge their presence in Africa is great news for everyone. We are looking forward to collaborating with the Academy in future projects”
A renowned player manager and sport consultant Max Masuka commended the development in World’s number one sporting game, throwing his support behind Athletes Sphere Management (ASM) for clinching the deal.
Congratulations to the ASM family for clinching such a deal. I have total confidence in this whole development that will definitely see the further expansion of Real Betis brand and also create opportunities for our youngsters. Indeed, exciting times ahead of us.
Liberty Pazvakawambwa SADC NEWS Correspondent