Sunday 03 December 2023, 22:00

FIFA President praises development of football in Guam on his first-ever visit

  • FIFA President visited Guam following the conclusion of the FIFA U-17 World Cup Indonesia 2023™

  • The visit centred around a meeting with key Guam Football Association (GFA) stakeholders

  • Football development was the key focus of discussions

FIFA President Gianni Infantino has completed his first trip to Guam where he visited the Guam Football Association (GFA), met with government officials and participated in a 8v8 football match featuring GFA and FIFA representatives.

The trip began with a meeting with Acting Governor of Guam, Joshua Tenorio and First Gentleman of Guam, Jeff Cook where they spoke about football development in the country. Mr Infantino then attended a lunch with Guam government officials, accompanied by GFA President Valentino San Gil.

“I spent a fantastic day in the beautiful country of Guam discussing football development with the government of Guam and the Guam Football Association before enjoying a game of football, which – as always – brought people together,” said the FIFA President. “It is clear to me that Guam is a football-loving country, and along with all the stakeholders, we will continue to build football infrastructure and give opportunities to young girls and boys with a football dream.”

Following the meetings, the FIFA President attended an awards ceremony that recognised 13 GFA member clubs, with all youth and senior member clubs participating.

Guam joined FIFA in 1996 and have taken part in three FIFA World Cup™ qualifying campaigns: for the 2018, 2022 and 2026 tournaments.

In December 2022, the GFA launched a four-year plan aimed at making Guam one of the top emerging nations in the Asian Football Confederation. The plan has five pillars which are:

  • Grow participation

  • Club development and licensing

  • Recruitment, education and development

  • Competition development

  • National teams

“Thank you to everyone at GFA, led by President Valentino San Gil, and all those working in football here. FIFA will keep investing and working with you because we believe in growing football all over the entire world,” said Mr Infantino.

Major GFA infrastructure was destroyed by Typhoon Mawar which brought hurricane-force winds and heavy rain to the island in May of this year. With help in-part from FIFA, repairs saw the GFA recover enough to stage youth leagues between September and November, as well as host Singapore in a FIFA World Cup 26™ qualifier in October.

Further funding from the FIFA Foundation Recovery Programme - which supports communities that have been hit by natural disasters or unforeseen events by providing solidarity and emergency funding - will support future repairs to the GFA Training Centre, as well as to damaged sporting infrastructure experienced by the wider football community.