Lüderitz football academy making waves

By Michael Uugwanga

NEARLY two years into its existence, the Lüderitz Football Academy is making big waves by keeping young people off the streets through football skills, life skills and teaching ethics for both boys and girls.

The academy was established in October 2018 by Toivo Kapolo and today it has over 90 young players in the age range of between 10 to 17 years of which 60 are boys and 30 are girls.

The academy is situated in Benguela location in Luderitz where it also conducts its training activities at the town’s main sports stadium.

The academy recently received accreditation from the Namibia Football Association (NFA) and will be taking part in the NFA Galz and Goals competition for its girls’ team while the boys’ team is yet to approach the management of the Hopsol Youth Soccer league which is owned by former Brave Warriors captain Collin Benjamin.

Said Kapolo: “When the NFA launched the Galz and Goals programme in Luderitz early this year Thando Malo joined to help out with coaching. There is no subscription fee, no monthly fees for players because most of the players cannot afford nor have understanding about football development. The girls will soon be playing in the newly launched NFA Galz and Goals.

“Drug abuse is high in Lüderitz especially amongst the youth that is why I came up with this academy to keep our boys and girls off the streets. Also for many years we did not have a player from Lüderitz playing in the national team that is why I think that with this grassroots project we can produce national team players in the near future.”

Current female national team player Thomalina Pele Adams is also helping out with coaching as she hails from Lüderitz despite spending most of her football career in Windhoek at Tura Magic Ladies.

Kapolo who is an employee in the Covid-hit tourism industry uses his monthly salary to run the academy.

He also said that besides teaching the youth about football skills the academy has volunteers that teach the youth about discipline and moral values.

“We were so lucky to have received balls and kits from Dein ball fur Namibia, and cones and bibs from the Trophy palace. We also teach life skills, ethics, punctuality, discipline and how to become a better player and good citizens. We train four times a week. Any assistance will be much appreciated,” said Kapolo.