Football legend Dwight Yorke has a new role with ESM Football Academy and GEMS Education as Football Ambassador. He is tasked with supporting the organisation’s youth programmes with initiatives and strategies that are designed to grow football at the amateur and youth levels, and he will also be active in the ongoing efforts of GEMS Education to support youth taking up the sport.
GEMS Family: How do you see your role as ESM Football Ambassador evolving during the year ahead?
Dwight Yorke: I’ll be helping grow the game at the grassroots level, reaching out to aspiring young footballers and giving them the encouragement and opportunity to develop their individual techniques in all stages of their development. I’ll also be travelling to many youth tournaments hosted by ESM Football Academy and GEMS Education, such as the GEMS Sports Series, and to help in making some more tournaments happen. This will be beneficial for the sport in the U.A.E.
GEMS Family: What are your views on youth football in the U.A.E.?
Dwight Yorke: I have seen how football academies like ESM have become more professional and more organised in their approach. This means that the landscape for the sport is changing. Everyone realises that it is no longer about money, but rather about passion and commitment to a cause.
GEMS Family: How do ESM programmes help expat players and parents plan for the future?
Dwight Yorke: First of all, I truly understand the challenges of playing football in a small country and really relate to the dreams of young footballers who want to be playing in the major football leagues around the world. The ‘Player Centred Success’ model at ESM Football Academy puts the best interests of the player first. This is done by understanding each and every player’s definition of success and helping them achieve it.
GEMS Family: During the recent ESM Football Academy ‘Open Days’, what was your message to the parents and players?
Dwight Yorke: My message to the players and parents was that we at ESM can offer a wonderful opportunity structure, experience, up-to-date coaching, concepts and teaching materials, and the vision to produce quality young footballers.
GEMS Family: What coaching level are you currently certified at?
Dwight Yorke: I’ve achieved up to A Licence and next season I’ll be doing my Pro Licence.
GEMS Family: Knowing the landscape of football in the U.A.E., what one piece of advice would you give to our aspiring players?
Dwight Yorke: Whether its football or any other interest you’re pursuing, dedication is a trait you must build on. But more importantly have fun!