Arsenal confirms Academy program in Vietnam

English Premier League club Arsenal is helping the establishment of a US$4 million football academy in Vietnam. According to Doan Nguyen Duc, chairman of V-League club Hoang Anh Gia Lai, the U-12 students at the academy, similar to the JMG Academy Arsenal is partnering in Thailand, will undergo both football training and regular schooling. Construction of the academy, located in Pleiku in the Central Highlands province of Gia Lai, will start in March. "This will be the first football academy in Vietnam," said Duc. "The first course will have 20 trainees with two trainers from France," Duc said. "Arsenal will also send four boys from Ivory Coast for the first course, which will last seven years." Last weekend, officials from the two clubs signed a long-term agreement for training, players' transfers and souvenir sales, state media reported.