Eight months after putting forward the project, the first Chelsea Blue Pitch will become a reality and will be in operation from July this summer in Damansara Damai here.
Ron Gourlay, Chief Executive of Chelsea FC, announced the Chelsea Asia Tour in Malaysia eight months ago. Gourlay later had talks with his HRH Tengku Abdullah Sultan Ahmad Shah, the Deputy President of the Football Association of Malaysia (FAM) about the project.
The project forms part of the Chelsea Asia Tour 2011’s campaign called “Here to Play, Here to Stay” in Asia. The Chelsea Blue Pitch in Damansara Damai will be located at Jalan PJU 10/1A, which is along Jalan Kuala Selangor. Chelsea will play against the Malaysia XI on July 21 at the Bukit Jalil Stadium
Constructed by EMKAY Group, the Chelsea Blue Pitch at NPNG Sports Centre is a community based football training programme with development coaches from Chelsea coming over to Malaysia on a regular basis.
“We first launched the Blue Pitch programme in London in partnership with adidas in 2007 and launched the first international Blue Pitch – in Hong Kong – in December 2009 and our intention is to build further high-specification pitches across the APAC region and to work with local coaches to bring “the Chelsea Way” to Asia,” said Ron Gourlay. “The Blue Pitch will be available to Chelsea sponsors, local sponsors/charities and Chelsea Supporters Club. In short, this will be Malaysia Stamford Bridge” for our supporters club.”
Present at the function yesterday, apart from HRH Tengku Abdullah, Ron Gourlay, Tan Sri Mustapha Kamal, Chairman of EMKAY Group and Julian Kam, CEO of ProEvents Group, were Dato Azzuddin Ahmad, the general secretary of FAM and San Boon Wah, Managing Director of ProEvents International Malaysia.
Julian Kam, the CEO of ProEvents International Sdn Bhd, who has been appointed by Chelsea as the sole and exclusive agent for the Chelsea Asia Tour 2011 and also Blue Pitch project in Asia, said the contract will start this year for the next four years.
“Chelsea played here in 2008 and they visit Malaysia for the 2nd time in three years. This clearly demonstrates Chelsea’s commitment to football in Asia, and particularly in Malaysia.
We are proud to be part of this meaningful football project that could play an important part in our youth development programmes,” said Kam.
“As you all know, football is a game that has a large following in every country in the world and Malaysia is no exception. We are proud to be linked to this project with high hopes that it will bear fruit in churning out future national footballers. At the same time, we hope that our local coaches will benefit and learn the finer points in coaching from their Chelsea counterparts.”
In addition to the Blue Pitch, Chelsea’s Here to Play Here to Stay campaign will also feature a fans’ communication programme encouraging all football fans to make contact with Chelsea by completing a special-designed Chelsea Postcard and then drop them into the Chelsea post box. Those who filled in the postcard will have a chance to win a trip to London with match tickets to watch Chelsea in action at Stamford Bridge. The postcards and drop boxes can be found at all Ticketpro outlets, selected adidas outlets, One World Hotel, Bukit Jalil Stadium on match day or simply fill in the form online at http://www.chelseafc.com/page/OnTour.
Tickets for the Chelsea Asia Tour 2011 – Malaysia are priced at RM58, RM68, RM108 and limited VIP tickets at RM388 and available at selected adidas outlets and Ticketpro outlets, Ticketpro Hotline 03-78807999 and www.ticketpro.com.my.