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Rural primary school creates football legend

By Cao Xiating Updated: 2015-03-26

The boy named Gao Weiheng standing next to him was also a lead player in Wuchuan team. The 1.63-meter-tall boy was a center-back. “My father loves football, and I often watch the games with him, my favorite team is the Argentina team, and Messi is my idol,” the boy said, his eyes lighting up.

Chen Shangguan hoped more and more children like Gao Shangming and Gao Weiheng would come out of the school, “China has attached greater importance to teenage football education than before, that’s good news!”he said, “football education should start from an early age, which will help the players practice better techniques and train the ‘sense of ball’.”

The school spared no efforts to support the children’s football education. Qiu Xiaoqin, principal of the Gaowu Primary School, said that the school had set up a special fund for physical education, which should be no less than 10 percent of the school’s budget annually. The school has also compiled football textbooks for children of different ages.

But Qiu wanted more support from the government and the public. He said the school’s limited budget deterred them from building an artificial grassy football field. He also wanted the girls to take part in the sports more actively, which called for more financial support as well.

An overall reform plan to boost the development of soccer in China has been issued by the State Council General Office recently,which is exciting news for Qiu and the people who are concerned about the teenage football education. Qiu said the school was applying for the “National Football Magnet School”, which will help them win more support from the central government.

“Only when football thrived at grassroots level, can the great players be produced,” Qiu said.

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