Chelsea's Carter and Millwall coach Brown support Ali's launch night
PUBLISHED: 16:00 15 August 2019
Coach Judan Ali, from Tower Hamlets, will start running free football sessions for girls on Sunday
Chelsea Women's Jess Carter and Millwall's head of coaching Kenny Brown were among those to support the launch of Judan Ali's football academy this week.
Poplar-based restaurant Spice Merchants hosted the event on Monday and plenty were in attendance to find out about the sessions set to be put on for girls from the local area.
Ali, who holds a UEFA A license, will start training children aged from three up to 16 at The Workhouse, 116 Poplar High Street, E14 0AF, which is a five-a-side Astroturf pitch, on Sunday.
The sessions will be free to attend and Monday's launch was designed to give parents the chance to find out more and several youngsters were there to witness speeches by Brown, Carter and Ali.
Bradley McIntosh, once of S Club 7, was present with his child and Mo Samba, of Odin Sports Management, offered his support on the night.
Ex-West Ham United defender Brown said: "This can only be brilliant for the local community and also for football in general. It will be inclusive, so down the line there will be room for boys and everyone to join together and play football."
Carter, who signed for Birmingham City Women in 2013 after impressing in open trials, discussed why she felt the need to back Ali's new football academy initially for girls.
"In women's football there is not a direct pathway like I feel there is in men's football and it's about girls getting an opportunity to be a part of something and part of a team and to be encouraged to have fun," she added.
"For the kids at a young age it has to be about fun, so it's not about being a superstar or the next big thing, it's about being a kid and kicking a ball around and having fun.
"Then in the end if you reach that level and make it pro amazing, but if not you've made friends and had some quality football time, so that's why I wanted to be part of this."
To find out more call Ali on 07380 994888 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.