UEFA’s #PlayAnywhere campaign started with an incredible keepy-up video
Liv Cooke, the Freestyle Football world champion, joined the biggest names in women’s football for one of the most spectacular kick-abouts captured on camera to increase football participation among girls.
The 18-year-old was filmed showcasing her outrageous skills hundreds of feet up in a ski lift and on top of a fishing boat as UEFA, European football’s governing body, took seven professional footballers on an amazing journey to encourage girls and young women to take up the sport.
Play Anywhere was filmed in 13 unique locations across five countries in 12 days and spanning 16,000km the latest leg of UEFA’s Together #WePlayStrong campaign.
As well as Cooke’s awesome football acrobatics, the cast and crew filmed in some of Europe’s most idyllic and uninhabited locations; from the distinctive stone walls of Dubrovnik in southern Croatia, Gspon’s highest pitch in Europe in the Swiss Alps, the tiny island of Eriskay in northern Scotland’s Outer Hebrides to the remote fishing village of Henningsvær in the Lofoten archipelago in Norway.
The #PlayAnywhere crack squad included Norwegian sisters Ada and Andrine Hegerberg (of Lyon and Paris Saint Germain respectively) compatriot Maren Mjelde (Chelsea), English quartet Lauren James, Jordan Nobbs (both Arsenal), Fran Kirby (Chelsea) and Alex Greenwood (Liverpool) and FC Barcelona and Netherlands midfielder, Best FIFA Women's Player 2017 and UEFA Women’s Player of the Year 2017 Lieke Martens.
Their journey was followed by hundreds of girls across the continent who came to join their heroes as part of UEFA’s ongoing commitment to making football the No.1 sport for girls and women by 2020.
Liv Cooke, Freestyle Football world champion, said: “It was an incredible experience travelling Europe as an ambassador for UEFA’s #PlayAnywhere initiative, and showing girls that football really can be played anywhere. From a ski lift carriage to the highest football pitch in Europe, it was a huge
buzz to be showcasing my skills in such unusual locations and hopefully inspiring young people to pick up a ball and have fun with the sport. I can’t wait to see the Play Anywhere entries and meet the winners at Disneyland Paris in May.“
As well as premiering the Play Anywhere film, UEFA have also launched a Europe-wide competition for girls to show their love of football by posting photos and videos of kickabouts in the most random and unusual locations possible, for the chance to win an amazing family weekend at Disneyland Paris and exclusive weekly prizes from the stars of the Play Anywhere film.
Entrants have until 30th April to submit their quirky clips and snaps, with UEFA set to reveal their winning post shortly after on 1st May 2018.
Olympique Lyonnais’ Ada Hederberg, who made the journey home to Norway to take part in the
“I had an absolute blast filming the Play Anywhere film up north in Norway. The Lofoten Islands are famous the world over for showcasing Aurora Borealis – the Northern Lights – and it was great to go there and play amid such breathtaking scenery. I can’t wait for everyone to see it and hope it leads
to even more girls trying and enjoying football through this competition.”
Arsenal and England’s Jordan Nobbs, who enjoyed a kickabout in London’s Shepherd’s Bush, added:
“The real beauty of our game is that you really can Play Anywhere. It was great to be part of the next Together #WePlayStrong film.”
Play Anywhere provides UEFA with an additional platform to promote its first ever pan-European campaign, Together #WePlayStrong, which is an integral part of its five-year strategic plan to make football the number one sport for girls and women in countries across Europe.
UEFA’s ambition for how the game can attract more girls to play involves raising the profile and image of the game, increasing visibility and engagement, driving participation at grassroots level and increasing investment.
In Bulgaria, the UEFA campaign goes hand in hand with the Bulgarian slogan "Let's kick it!", which unites all Grassroots activities of the federation. As a host of the 2019 UEFA Women`s Under-17 Championship
European Championship for girls up to 17 years old in 2019 (details of the tournament's draw can be found here: https://www.uefa.com/womensunder17/news/#/iv/article/2516610), the Bulgarian Football Union aims to increase the number of girls playing football and support greatly the development of the game among young ladies in our country.
To enter the competition, young people are asked to post a photo or video of them with a football in a cool or unusual location, tagging @WePlaystrong and using the hashtag #PlayAnywhere. Full T&Cs can be found at: https://www.uefa.com/termsconditions/prizes.html
For more information about UEFA’s Together #WePlayStrong campaign visit: http://weplaystrong.org
You can watch the Play Anywhere video here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=apV2o-qNvsY&feature=youtu.be
Department "Public Relations and Media"