News article

FIFA Forward aids Lebanese stadium renovations

April 06 2023

Four stadiums in Lebanon have been revamped thanks to $1.3m (£1m/€1.2m) in funding from the FIFA Forward programme.

FIFA Forward aids Lebanese stadium renovations

These stadiums will serve the Lebanese Football Association at all levels of domestic men’s, women’s, youth and girl’s competitions. 

FIFA Forward 3.0 was launched in January 2023, aiming to provide more comprehensive funding and support for football development projects across the globe. There have been two successful iterations of the programme since its inception in 2016, with over $2.8bn committed to different projects for six confederations and 211 member associations. 

Four Lebanese stadiums were the focus of the funding – the Al Safa Stadium, Sin El Fil Municipal Stadium, Al Ahed Stadium and the Zgharta Sports Complex. The work has now been completed and the stadiums are hosting domestic competitions, women’s and girl’s competitions, youth competitions, men and women’s national team activities, coaching and refereeing workshops. 

“LFA is always striving to develop football throughout the country, and since the lack of stadia represented one of the main challenges, the FIFA Forward funds helped us overcome this barrier, ensuring we could continue with our commitment and dedication to develop our beloved game.” Jihad El Chohof, Lebanese FA General Secretary

Sin El Fil Municipal Stadium celebrated its opening ceremony in January after undergoing extensive renovation last year. The venue hosts lower division matches and youth competitions, as well as training sessions. Al Safa Stadium is a multi-use stadium in Beirut and is the home of Safa SC, with a capacity of 4,000.

Al Ahed Stadium is located in the Al-Ouzai area of Bourj el-Barajneh in the southern suburbs of Beirut. It has a capacity of roughly 2,000 and is used by Al Ahed FC as a training ground.

The Zgharta Sports Complex is a 5,000-capacity stadium and is home to Salam Zgharta FC, as well as other clubs in Zgharta. The stadium underwent renovation between June and August last year, in order to host matches in the 2022-23 Lebanese Premier League.

Jihad El Chohof, Lebanese FA General Secretary, said: “Without FIFA Forward funds, especially in this unprecedented financial crisis that our country has gone through, we wouldn’t have been able to ‘revive’ Safa Stadium, located in the heart of the capital which attracts a large number of players from all age categories and of both genders.

“LFA is always striving to develop football throughout the country, and since the lack of stadia represented one of the main challenges, the FIFA Forward funds helped us overcome this barrier, ensuring we could continue with our commitment and dedication to develop our beloved game.”

Image: Piotr Chrobot on Unsplash

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