Recently the Sichuan National Football Competition and Training Base has welcomed a group of special players. Hailing from the Liangshan Mountains of Sichuan province, they are members of the first women’s football team of the Yi nationality in China. The girls will start a new life of studying and professional football training after traveling a long distance to the base, from which they will take their first step onto the football field.
The Liangshan Mountains, among other regions, are still relatively poor, and efforts have been made to step up poverty alleviation and promote the popularization of football, leading to the idea of forming a team.
From this September, coaches designated by the Sichuan Football Administrative Center and the Sichuan Football Association came to primary schools at the Liangshan Mountains and selected 28 players. On Oct. 22, the girls began their training, while continuing their primary school education.
“It takes time, and I hope I can coach the girls to success so that after returning to their hometowns they can help villagers to broaden their minds and lift themselves out of poverty using sport,” said Coach Chen Hua with hope in his eyes.