Top English Premier League side Liverpool on Wednesday announced the launch of a residential football academy here in partnership with city-based DSK Shivajians FC.

The full-time coaching academy, named LFC International Football Academy DSK, will be a world class purpose-built residential complex, featuring full-size pitches, practice areas, classrooms, changing rooms, a gym, canteen, lecture theatre, residential and medical facilities.

The academy will officially open in January next year and will be a market-leading development centre for young players in India, servicing DSK Shivajians, a release said.

The programme, which will support aspiring young footballers up to the age of 18, will provide the players with the opportunity to develop their game in a professional academy environment, said the release from Libero Sports, a consultancy firm which facilitated the initiative.

“At the Academy in Liverpool we aim to develop outstanding players and good human beings. The results speak for themselves as last season seven players from the academy made their first team debuts. Education and community work are keys to the development of our young players and we look forward to taking our knowledge and experience to India,” said Academy Director, Frank McParland.

Coaches from Liverpool FC will work on the project in India and will pass on technical expertise to the players and coaches involved in the Academy. Over time, more full time coaches will come from Liverpool FC to oversee each age group players at the Academy.

“This is the first time an English top-flight club has partnered with an Indian team to help them bring through local talent. Millions of our LFC family are based in India so we are very excited to be working with DSK Shivajians and being part of the game’s development in the country,” said Chief Commercial Officer at Liverpool FC, Billy Hogan.

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