Countdown begins to St George's Park opening

St George's Park, the Football Association's new national football centre, will be officially opened on Tuesday 9 October.

The opening, to be carried out by the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, will mark a landmark moment for the FA, providing a dedicated training base for every England national team for the very first time.

Roy Hodgson's senior squad will train at their new £100m home in advance of their World Cup qualifier with San marino at Wembley on Friday 12 October.

They will train on the elite DESSO training pitch, an exact replica of the Wembley surface, one of twelve pitches on the 330-acre site near Burton-upon-Trent.

St George’s Park will also be the new centre for English coaching, with the FA keen to promote an ethos around long-term development and improving coaching standards to help develop future generations of technically adept English footballers.

This summer Club Website was given a tour of the centre, which also houses a full-size indoor 3G pitch, a multi-purpose indoor sports hall, state-of-the-art medical and sports science centres, an array of gymnasiums, rehabilitation suites and two Hilton hotels.

St George's Park has attracted praise from both within and outside of the game.

England World Cup hero Sir Geoff Hurst, described the centre as “absolutely fabulous", while Minister for Sport Hugh Robertson said: "The very best elite facilities stand for no compromise and success, St. George’s Park has that feel about it.”

The facilities are certainly impressive, but the Football Association knows that the centre will only live up to its potential if these are accompanied by the very best people.

“Great facilities are one thing," said FA Chairman David Bernstein.

"However, it is the people who live and work here who will really bring it to life and in particular the most important group of all, the coaches."

For a more detailed look around St George's Park, check out the video below.

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