Philosophy, Functionality and Architecture – with these three keywords as a focus and in mind Manchester City Football Club have created a Football Academy that is now viewed as one of the best resourced in the world. A global leading sports infrastructure that is now the bedrock for the club to be successful for the future. The vision for the club, when we started this programme of investing in infrastructure here in Manchester, was truly to build a world-class facility for the future. A world-class football training academy that takes into account the best experiences around the world. 16.5 pitches, one entire inside pitch, three gyms, treatment areas canteens with healthy food and offices for all the staff members. Everything is in one place. The challenge of this project was to frame it. What is it, what are we trying to achieve and how do we go about building infrastructure, hardware that not only captures who we are as an organization and celebrates it and makes it work and thrive every day, but how do we also do that in a way that creates a successful, winning organization? We spent two years researching the world’s best sporting training facilities – not just in soccer but in every sport and we developed a level of understanding an insight into what made truly great sports organization successful. But not just in the sporting context. The club also understood what their responsibilities are towards the local area and the community around the campus. We’ve tried to work with local people to build a facility by the community for the community and with the community. The ambition for the football club was to make sure that we’ve got a stadium and its training ground that are wholly sustainable provided facilities for our players and our young people that give them every opportunity to become the best players we can produce but also good all-rounded people that can deliver into the community. More than 450 players train every week on the 80-acre campus. The players couldn’t be more satisfied with what they have on offer. The facilities of Manchester City Football Club are unbelievable. I think for a professional footballer, this is what you dream of being able to play on nice pitches, to be able to have the best facilities available to improve yourself as a player. So I really feel that all these facilities do benefit in our preparation day to day. Training where the professional footballers train is obviously like a dream come true. It doesn’t matter what level you play at it feels like we are all one team. It makes me feel good on the pitch it makes me work harder and it makes me progress. This is spectacular. This is almost a city inside a city. It’s a state of the art facility and many other professional teams don’t have the luxury of having this. It’s definitely a top notch. Let’s say it’s my home away from home. If I’m not with my family, this is where I feel most comfortable. That’s where I feel most at ease and that’s you know another important fact of whichever facility you are going to be spending your time, it needs to feel like it somehow belongs to you. Manchester City Football Club has transformed the area around the campus from an industrial contaminated area to a new community hub that provides development opportunities education, health and success. This is part of our DNA. This goes back to when this football club started It was very much linked to the community, and for all the right reasons then and for all the right reasons now we are trying to improve the lives of the people in Manchester but we’re also trying to improve what is happening with our young footballers. We want to create better footballers but better people. All you have to do is spend an afternoon here walking around and you are watching community participation within the facility you are seeing our women’s team
training you are seeing Academy and Youth teams competing and you are seeing the first team walking around, within the same complex Very inspirational and a really an incredible facility overall. Manchester City Football Academy is a unique project that sets a new benchmark in football.