My Football Career program launched by FFA

Today, Former Qantas Socceroo and Central Coast Mariners Defender Tony Vidmar, Qantas Matildas captain, Cheryl Salisbury, and Football Federation Australia (FFA) Head of Operations, Matt Carroll, officially launched the new FFA player support services program, My Football Career.

Today, Former Qantas Socceroo and Central Coast Mariners Defender Tony Vidmar, Qantas Matildas captain, Cheryl Salisbury, and Football Federation Australia (FFA) Head of Operations, Matt Carroll, officially launched the new FFA player support services program, My Football Career.

My Football Career is a comprehensive player support services program, which is designed to empower players to be proactive life/career managers who are encouraged to be career informed and to pursue continual professional development.

"This program empowers our elite athletes to make educated life decisions during their playing career for life when their on-field days are over," said FFA Head of Operations Matt Carroll at today's launch.

Former Qantas Socceroo and now Central Coast Mariners Defender Tony Vidmar is an ambassador for this landmark program and hopes that the next generation of professional footballers will benefit greatly from this initiative.

"When I first went overseas I never had this sort of support group behind me that could advise you on your decision making. Basically, a lot of players went into the deep end and wondered whether they had made the right choice or not. Now the younger players have a support group around them to help them make the decisions which are best for them," said Vidmar.

The program is not only aimed at the current Socceroos & Hyundai A-League players, but also elite youth & female footballers who have unique challenges in relation to their professional development.

"When I was growing up it was always something that I though was very important in the women's game. Because we (female footballers) don't earn a lot of money it's really important that the learning and player development as well as the financial planning programs equip our elite players not only for a football career but also life," said Qantas Matildas captain Cheryl Salisbury.

An integral part of the My Football Career is the totally seamless delivery of support services to assist all elite amateur & professional football players make educated and informed career decisions during and after their playing career.

Access to the comprehensive support services are available to the athletes via the My Football Career website (www.myfootballcareer.com.au) and includes information related to:

- Career Management & Networking - Learning & Development - Lifestyle Management - Financial Planning & Management

A Player Advisory Panel will also be formed in the near future to facilitate dialogue between young, up-and-coming, footballers with older, more established, professional and national team players. In addition special coaching courses are being held to assist current players gain the necessary accredited qualifications to allow them to stay involved with the sport when their playing career ends.

The program is also supported by organisations such as the Professional Footballers Association (PFA), Relationships Australia, Relate NZ, the Australian Sports Commission through the National Athlete Career & Education Program and the National Australia Bank (NAB) who are providing financial education seminars to all athletes.

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