I went to see a panel discussion on “Integrity of the Young” because Gerard Houllier, the ex Liverpool manager was taking part.
“The youth are both the most important and most vulnerable players when it comes to protecting the integrity of sport. This session will look at the threats and pressures to our next generation of sports stars, and to how community and sport-driven programs can help to proliferate knowledge and best practice in those circles.”
“In the context of recent cases of match-fixing and challenges of third party ownership, this session will also address the best training and education measures which could be implemented in order to safeguard the future of this promising generation. The panel will also open up to some of the personalities of the future for sport in Qatar, and showcase the variety of youth initiatives underway in the region.”
I came for Houllier, but I stayed for John Amaechi. He was the first speaker that didn’t patronise or regurgitate the same old stuff we had heard a thousand times before. He was such a breath of fresh air, that at one point, I almost started clapping, and later on, he did recieve a spontaneous round of applause…unfortunately, I can’t remember exactly what he said, but I did talk to him afterwards, and he has invited me to get in touch next time I am in Manchester!
John Amaechi OBE is an organisational consultant and a high-performance executive coach. He is also a New York Times best-selling author and a former NBA basketball star. Since retirement from sport, John works with organisations in the US and Europe, from the business, educational, sporting and philanthropic fields, to help them assess, manage, maximise and retain their human capital. In the UK, John has his own charitable sports and community centre with more than 2,500 young people per week going through its doors receiving schooling in sport, leadership and life skills.