New York City FC Unveils Etihad City Football Academy in New York
Behind the Scenes at NYCFC’s new first-team training facility with 360 Tour with Tommy McNamar. #NYCFC
Significant financial investments in projects to develop new, top quality soccer facilities and remodel or expand current training environments are being made in the USA. In January, the Kansas City’s Pinnacle National Development Center was the newest crown jewel of American soccer. Now, another world-class facility has opened to develop elite players, coaches, and referees of all ages.
New York City FC is what happens when the beautiful game meets the world’s greatest city.
Soccer News: The City that Never Sleeps has a new reason to be awake. Transcending borders, absorbing cultures and giving back to the city, all while providing a world-class environment for players – these are the mottos of New York City FC.
The club is living up to its vision and the NYCFC senior team has 26 players from 15 different countries and now has an amazing, new 17-acre training facility, the Etihad City Football Academy in New York.
The Academy features leading medical and sports science facilities to drive elite performance.
This will be the third Academy built across the globe by the Club’s majority owners, City Football Group (CFG), and brings a best-in-class approach to infrastructure and a global network of soccer expertise to New York City.
NYCFC Sporting Director, Claudio Reyna, said, “It’s incredible to have built a facility that will attract the best talent and provide our players and coaches with an inspiring setting to work and prepare.”
“We wanted to create a family environment where everyone feels part of the team.”
At its core, everything is built around the soccer pitch and the players’ functional needs to help them prepare to win. Each interior specialty function – including the circular locker room, communal dining hall, professional kitchen with onsite chef specialist, medical treatment rooms, and gym – are positioned and designed so players can perform at their best on the pitch.
The soccer pitch is usable year-round due to undersoil heating capability designed to create the perfect playing surface where the ball moves consistently and quickly, being independently tested regularly to maintain performance targets.
Each day, the pitch is prepared and mowed down to a specific grass length which fosters the type of soccer we want to play at NYCFC and at all our Group Clubs –possession based attacking football where the ball is moved as quickly as possible.
Also, there is a state-of-the-art camera analysis system, with cameras in multiple locations, overlooks the soccer pitch and is used to record every training session from a bird’s eye view and inform the coaches’ data analysis of player performance.
These adjacent performance areas include post-exercise aquatic recovery area, gym, boot room, massage and medical treatment rooms, team meeting room with theater, dining hall, kit (uniform) storage, laundry, showers, and restrooms.
The gym has been designed to be big enough to accommodate a full team pre-activation. It has dedicated equipment for the conditioning of players and a modular wall system (the first of its kind in the U.S.) which can be used for strength training, rehab, and isometric work.
The gym opens onto an outdoor fitness area on a FIFA- approved synthetic training surface which allows pitch-side workouts outside, ideal during the spring/summer MLS season where players mix indoor and outdoor activity.
Throughout the season, NYCFC will be hosting a series of fan events at the training facility. The first fan event will take place within 48-hours of today’s ribbon cutting, to invite NYCFC fans to the facility to watch training sessions and experience the Club’s new home.
Speaking about the unveiling of the newest Etihad City Football Academy, Vice-Chairman of NYCFC, Marty Edelman, said, “This is a proud and important milestone for our Group and Club. Not only is this facility evidence of our deep investment in global soccer, it also shows our Club’s and owners’ long-term commitment to New York City and the Metropolitan Area.”
The Etihad City Football Academy in NY was designed by the NY-based architect, Rafael Viñoly.
After sitting vacant and unused for more than a decade, the 17-acre site has now come to life.
Creating a sustainable community: The project created 210 construction jobs, 60% of which were located within 30 miles of the facility. In addition, 35 contracts were awarded to local companies and NYCFC donated $250,000 to the town to put towards infrastructure.
NYCFC is deeply committed to serving its local community. Orangeburg is well-known as a community that embraces soccer and NYCFC has had a presence in the area through a partnership with World Class FC where the NYCFC Girls Academy is based.
NYCFC sister Club, Manchester City FC, will train at the Etihad City Football Academy in NY during their pre-season summer tour in the U.S.
Who is financially supporting this effort? Etihad Airways has been a supporter of NYCFC from the beginning as a principal and founding partner and is an extension of the airline’s significant relationships with sister Clubs, Premier League champions, Manchester City and Melbourne City FC in the A-League.
This is the next chapter in the partnership and will see Etihad Airways and NYCFC continue to support the growth of soccer, the world’s biggest and favorite sport, here in the U.S.
“This is an incredibly exciting moment for our Club. Our hope is that this new facility will be a hub for soccer expertise and the soccer community in New York,” said NYCFC President, Jon Patricof.
Vice President Marketing Partnerships at Etihad Airways, Patrick Pierce, said, “We are delighted to unveil the Etihad City Football Academy. This world-class facility will serve as a center for innovation and talent development, two areas of importance for both New York City FC and Etihad Airways. We look forward to supporting the academy’s contribution to Major League Soccer and the New York community for years to come.”