NYC kids celebrate unique rooftop pitch
- Thu 07 Jun 2012, 12:20PM
- Posted by Nicola McCarthy
Manchester City Football Club and UAE Embassy have opened a first-of-its-kind football field on the six-story rooftop of Harlem’s Lexington Academy elementary school.
Students, community members, local New York City officials, leaders from MCFC and diplomats from the United Arab Emirates gathered to celebrate the dedication of the enclosed pitch at P.S. 72 Lexington.
The field was a gift to the Academy from City and the UAE Embassy in Washington.
The Football+ initiative is part of the Embassy’s partnership with the club, which first began when The Blues toured the United States in the summer of 2010.
The year-round facility is a first for Manhattan, and will be for the exclusive use of the elementary school and its students.
Construction began in 2010 and since then, the students at Lexington Academy have been receiving Manchester City’s award winning coaching and education programmes on a daily basis.
Principal at Lexington Academy, Anthony Hernandez was delighted with how it has turned out.
This has been a tremendous addition to our school and our students. We thank Manchester City and the UAE Embassy for providing access to such quality coaching and programming on a daily basis. It is an incredible asset for our kids in and out of the classroom.
City Soccer in the Community Executive Director Paul Jeffries said,
“We have been working with Principal Hernandez and this entire community for almost two years now, and have seen how soccer can make a difference in the lives of these kids. This program is really a flagship effort that we will replicate across the United States.”
This is the third football pitch that the UAE Embassy and Manchester City have worked together to build and gift in the US.
Last year, The Boys and Girls Club of East Los Angeles received a field at their facility, and earlier this year, a pitch and programme was established at The Hank Kline Boys and Girls Club in Miami, Florida.
A fourth is planned for Chicago this autumn.