COPA 2013 EDITION PLANS TO TRANSITION FROM U-17 TO U-15

Kigali, Friday 26th April, 2013 – COPA Coca-Cola football tournament has kicked off its 2013 edition today with plans to move from U-17 to U-15. The move will see much younger teams compete for the COPA Championship trophy and a spot at the annual international camp.

“Our transition from U-17 to U-15 will allow us to harness talent from a younger age giving a chance of being picked up by local football academies and clubs,” said Marketing Director, Bralirwa Plc, Jan Van Velzen. “It will give COPA players the opportunity to develop their football skills and gain experience earlier,” he added.

In Africa, the Coca-Cola COPA tournament is run in over 20 countries giving more than 50,000 young players the opportunity to display their talent. Over the years, bona fide professional stars have emerged from the tournament including Zambian national team goalkeeper Kennedy Mweene and his teammates Nathan Sinkala and Stophila Sunzu; Ugandan international defender Timothy Batabaire; Nigeria FC Porto midfielder Mikel Agu; Kenyan midfielder McDonald Mariga; Tanzanian striker Thomas Ulimwengu; and South African duo Mandla Masango and Happy Jele among others.

Locally, Copa Coca-Cola has crafted football talents like Emery Bayisenge, Yannick Mukunzi and Cyubahiro Jacques who now play for the APR FC, not forgetting our two top players for last year Djuma Nizeyimana and America Kalisa, that have been drafted to Vision FC.

“This thinking behind our new slogan ‘Where Heroes Are Born’ which you will see on all marketing materials going forward are not only the professional players who have made it big, but our own players, parents who offer support, coaches pour their all in to the teams and even the fans who come to cheer. All are heroes”, said the Marketing Manager of Bralirwa Plc, Martine Gatabazi.

Like previously, this year’s tournament will be open to school teams with each region securing an opportunity to present both boys and girls teams to take part in the games. During the preliminary rounds, each team will play a number of games before qualifying for or being eliminated from the next round. The best teams will then move forward to qualify for the national finals which will be held on the 25th and 26th of May 2013.

“Each year, COPA Coca-Cola gives hundreds of budding stars an opportunity to refine their skills through intra and inter-country competitions, and exposure to world-class football. Last year, the players participated in an exciting international camp under the guidance of Chelsea FC Foundation coaches who shall continue to work with us this year,” she added.

The tournament kicks off this Sunday 28th April at Stade Muhanga with subsequent games slated across the country.                              

-ENDS-

CONTACTS FOR MEDIA:  

Anthony Olwit- General Manager, EXP Demand Agency. Tel- 0728662436     
Yvette Ntagozera- Bralirwa Plc. Soft Drinks Brand Mgr. Tel- 0788875482

 

ABOUT COPA COCA-COLA

COPA Coca-Cola originated in Mexico in 1998 and is a national youth football tournament that seeks to support the development of grassroots youth talent.  COPA Coca-Cola works in partnership with Government and / or Football Federations to make the tournament one of the leading events in a country’s soccer calendar.

Today, COPA Coca-Cola occurs in multiple nations around the world including USA, Argentina, Brazil, Germany and Chile, and culminates in a World Cup style International COPA Coca-Cola tournament (ICCC) each summer.
In Africa, COPA Coca-Cola is played in countries such as South Africa, Mozambique, Zambia, Uganda, Kenya, Angola, Ethiopia, Tanzania, Rwanda, Zambia and Zimbabwe as a local country tournament. In 2009 the following ECABU countries sent teams / players to compete in the Africa Copa coca-cola tournament in South Africa: Tanzania, Uganda, Ethiopia, Malawi, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Botswana, Namibia, Rwanda, Congo and Kenya. Nigeria and South African Team were also present at the Tournament.
2011 will see over 19 Countries in ECABU activating Copa Coca-Cola in their respective countries tapping into the passion and aspirations of young talented youth while promoting active healthy lifestyles.

ABOUT BRALIRWA 

Bralirwa Plc is a Rwandan company producing and selling beers and soft drinks. The Company beer portfolio includes Primus, Mützig, Guinness, Amstel and Turbo King produced in our Gisenyi brewery and Heineken beer which is imported. We produce Primus beer, our main brand since 1959 and our soft drinks plant started operating in 1974 in partnership with The Coca-Cola Company. We produces Coca-Cola brands; Coca Cola, Fanta Orange and Fanta Citron, Fanta Fiesta, Sprite, Krest Tonic and own brand Vital’ O.
The company was founded in 1957 with the construction of a brewery in Gisenyi, located at Lake Kivu. Since 1971, Bralirwa Plc is part of the internationally renowned Group Heineken which holds 75% of Bralirwa Plc shares while the 25% remaining shares are hold by independent shareholders. As a socially responsible company Bralirwa Plc supports a variety of projects from Education to Health and Environment.

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Copa Cocacola 2013 (Images)

 

 

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