A teenage Filipino footballer is currently in Spain as among the second batch of participants in the La Liga Academy, a top-level academy put up by one of Europe’s top leagues.
Rafael Garcia, aged 16, will take part in the training program at ESC La Liga & NBA Centre in Madrid where he will get a chance to develop under the “La Liga Methodology” for the duration of the 2023-24 season.
“At La Liga Academy. I will be able to enjoy meeting new teammates from different countries,” Garcia said after his inclusion to the Academy was announced by La Liga in a press release on Wednesday.
“I will discover new cultures. I’m looking forward to playing football and studying with them,” added Garcia, who plays more on the defensive side either as a center back or right back.
Garcia is the first Filipino to attend the La Liga Academy after training for Makati FC, GOM Football Center and Stallion-Laguna.
The La Liga Academy was launched last year with the first batch composed of 37 players aged 13 to 18 from 20 countries.
“The development of interest in football in Southeast Asia is evolving exponentially, especially in the Philippines, helping to reach new profiles of young players from all over the world,” said Juan Florit, who heads the La Liga Football Development.
“It is therefore a privilege for La Liga Academy to have Rafael, who has shown great promise and we hope that next season we can help him develop a series of skills and values through a unique sporting and educational experience.”
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