Slovenia is the latest European national football association to receive a mini-pitch as a UEFA Jubilee gift.
The pitch in the town of Sezana – which has 7,000 inhabitants and lies close to the Italian border - was opened by UEFA honorary treasurer and Executive Committee member Mathieu Sprengers and the president of the Football Association of Slovenia (NSZ), Rudolf Zavrl. The ceremony was also attended by local dignitaries and members of Slovenia's sports administration.
Katanec kicks off
Pupils from the Srecko Kosovel primary school and young footballers from the local FC Tabor club took part in the opening game on the pitch, with one of Slovenia's most famous footballing figures Srecko Katanec starting the match.
The mini-pitch gift kicks off a comprehensive programme drawn up by the NZS in conjunction with the state authorities, in particular Slovenia's sports ministry. The approved grassroots project will run over the next three years, with the aim being to construct football facilities to help nurture the country's young footballers – with the ultimate objective being to groom the stars of the future.
UEFA's HatTrick Board, which is responsible for UEFA's HatTrick assistance programme, is offering a prototype mini-pitch to each UEFA member association to commemorate the European body's 2004 Golden Jubilee. The mini-pitch in question should be installed near to the association's headquarters and possibly close to, or on the premises of, a school.
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