Fleetwood Town agree partnership with Uzbekistan team Lokomotiv TashkentFleetwood Town FC has become the role model for one of Central Asia’s biggest football markets.
Uzbekistan, which boasts a population in excess of 31 million people, and has the fourth largest gold deposits in the world, has invested extensively in its football facilities and one of its leading clubs is looking to the UK to assist its long term development.
Lokomotiv Tashkent, who finished runners up in last season’s Uzbek Premier League and lifted their domestic cup, identified Fleetwood as an ideal role model having followed the League One club’s meteoric rise from the non-league.
Lokomotiv’s Partnerships manager Alisher Polatov said: “We are keen to develop our club to the highest level both on and off the pitch.
“The UK has a long and admirable history in football and we were determined to find a UK partner to work with.
“We understand that the standards in the UK are much higher and therefore it was important that we work with a club at a realistic level.
“The achievements of Fleetwood in such a short time have been amazing and their plans for the future are very exciting.
“We are delighted therefore that Fleetwood has agreed to become our partners and we look forward to working together for mutual benefit and to building long term friendships between Tashkent and Fleetwood.”
The two clubs will sign a historic partnership agreement that will see them share their on and off-field experience.
It will also see the development of a number of commercial opportunities including the introduction of new potential sponsors and a commercial pre-season tour for the Cod Army in 2016.
As part of the Club’s new training ground development, Fleetwood are working on many unique approaches for its future use. One of those areas is an international academy which would include welcoming young players from Uzbekistan and Central Asia.
There will also be opportunities for Fleetwood’s development group and youth players to travel to Uzbekistan for friendly matches during the forthcoming season.
Fleetwood’s CEO Steve Curwood said: “We felt growing the Club beyond UK shores was essential to reach out to a wider audience, both in the way of general recognition but also to attract new sponsors and partnership opportunities, and generally growing the awareness of Fleetwood Town and our story so far.
“This exciting opportunity, with another proactive and relatively new club that Lokomotiv are, will allow work with a region, as yet unexplored by European clubs. It will enable us to share experiences, ideas, and set up future meaningful arrangements.
“As a very progressive Club it also provides an opportunity to continue to learn about new ways of doing things which is important if we are to continue to progress as a football club.’’
This pioneering relationship is being supported by the British Ambassador in Uzbekistan, George Edgar, who will host a welcome dinner when Fleetwood representatives visit the country.
The partnership will be managed by two highly experienced companies with Cheshire based Kickworldwide managing Fleetwood’s interests and Art UZ Promotions representing Lokomotiv Tashkent.
A media launch was attended by officials of Lokomotiv and Fleetwood at Highbury today, with the formal partnership agreement to be signed in Tashkent in the coming weeks.