First National Asian Football Festival
AsiaEurope Football Festival – First National Football Festival Highlighting Asian and Ethnic Football
Driven by a desire to break down barriers and facilitate equal opportunities, Majid Lavji created the first national Asian football festival in 2003. The AsiaEurope Football Festival was sponsored by Liverpool City Council, Sport England, The FA, Kick it Out, as well as government organisations such as the Department of Culture Media and Sports and the then Prime Minister Tony Blair, who personally provided his full support to the programme.
“There is one Asian professional footballer in England. That’s a scandal. Why? Because they feel excluded. Ask clubs such as Walsall or Bury, where the best teenage footballers are in their areas. They’ll say it’s the Asian kids who play on the street and develop close control. Get them in, make them feel welcome. We support the AsiaEurope Football Festival.”
Sir Alex Ferguson
Manager, Manchester United Football Club from 1986 – 2013
“I support the AsiaEurope Football Festival in promoting ethnic football in the UK. I also want to pass on to everyone taking part my good wishes and for a successful festival.”
Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from 1997 – 2007
“AsiaEurope Football Festival is an opportunity for football organisations to come together in support of ethnic minorities in the UK and to break down the stereotypical barriers.”
Founder & Director, AsiaEurope Football
“Sport England supports the AsiaEurope Football Festival, which is an impressive initiative to get more people from Asian and ethnic communities involved in sport. There must be a wealth of talent among young Asian players which has yet to reach its full potential. This tournament can make that happen.”
Chief Executive, Sport England from 2003 to 2006
“We fully support the aims and objectives of what AsiaEurope Football are doing in promoting Asian and ethnic football in the UK”.
The Football Association / Liverpool County FA
“The government is keen to see sport being used as a tool for bringing together ethnic communities in the UK. We give our support to AsiaEurope Football in highlighting ethnic football in the UK. The Department wishes you every success on the weekend of the football festival.”
Department of Culture, Media & Sport