The Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Development Committee has approved the recommendation of a new game-changing Member Associations guidance tool at its meeting on Wednesday, September 19 in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
The Advance 11 will serve as a benchmarking assessment report of eleven football development categories, which include legal and governance, finance and risk management, administration, human resources, facilities management, communications, marketing and branding, commercial and business development, national teams and competitions management as well as advocacy, engagement and relations.
Under the leadership of newly-appointed Chairperson, Zhang Jian from China, who was also joined by two new members – Ruselle Zapanta from the Northern Mariana Islands and Jun Aratani from Japan – the committee noted the positive findings from the pilot phase which reviewed the League Management and Financial capabilities of MAs.
The Advance 11, which will be implemented across the Continent in 2019, will also provide clear and progressive steps for Member Associations to focus on and to systemically transform their capabilities across the entire football ecosystem.
Based on the outcome of the Advance 11 pilot schemes, the Committee also underlined its commitment to enhance the financial management capabilities of Member Associations with the aim to establish robust governance and compliance standards by 2020.
Transitioning into the implementation phase, members also agreed that Financial Management will form part of the Core Development Goals initiative, which focuses on driving strategic, tailor-made programmes essential for long-term football development that presently includes the Competition Management System, Live Streaming Platform, and commercialisation of Member Associations’ content.
Member Associations will now undergo a review to establish and finalise the required policies, policies structure and systems to put in place. Selected staff will also benefit from workshops and training to improve their financial reporting practices by June 2020.
AFC Development Committee Chairperson, Zhang Jian said, “Effective financial management is the hallmark of all professional organisations. This is an important area of development as it ensures greater transparency and accountability.”
“Our development initiatives play an important part of the AFC’s Vision and Mission, which can only be achieved through strong Member Associations. Through a targeted and customised approach, we are confident that our Member Associations will strengthen the landscape of Asian football, both off and on the pitch.”
The Committee also recommended approval of the expansion of the AFC President’s Infrastructure Initiative to include a wider range of projects with more details to be announced at the AFC Executive Committee meeting in Tashkent later this month.