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UEFA Foundation and Lay’s team up to open new Brazilian pitch

Lay’s launch their third community pitch in Sao Paulo - created by reusing empty crisp packets that will benefit thousands of local people.

A community in Brazil has a brand-new football facility to enjoy thanks to the on-going collaboration between the UEFA Foundation for Children, UEFA Champions League partner Lay’s and the streetfootballworld network.

The new pitch was constructed by reusing empty crisp packets and is the third opened this year by the Lay’s RePlay programme following the UK and South Africa, with more to come in 2022.

AC Milan and Brazil legend Cafu was at the opening of the Sao Paulo pitch this week, showing his skills alongside local children.

Cafu, former Brazil international and Lay’s RePlay ambassador:

"I had to fight hard on and off the field to be recognised around the world as a talented player. Football taught me how to celebrate victories, but it also gave me the strength to face life's obstacles. Sport is undoubtedly a way to promote social change, hence the relevance of projects like this led by Lay’s. It is this spirit that I want to convey to the young people who will participate in the activities, and I am proud to kick off this initiative."

Urs Kluser, UEFA Foundation for Children general secretary:

"Football is loved the world over and nowhere more so than in Brazil. Using the game’s popularity and this fantastic Lay’s RePlay initiative, we can offer young people in Sao Paulo the opportunity to learn vital lessons that will help them for the rest of their lives."

How do you make a football pitch from crisp packets?

An aerial view of the new facility
An aerial view of the new facility

In addition to promoting a positive impact on communities, Lay’s RePlay football pitches also minimise environmental impact. From the materials making the pitch to installation, the pitches are designed to be as environmentally sustainable as possible. Empty packets are collected from local waste by using recycling partnerships to give them a second life. The packs are washed, shredded and converted into pellets that form the underlying layer beneath the turf, called Ecocept™. Both the turf and Ecocept™ layer are 100% recyclable at the end of their life span.

Promoting positive change through sport

Cafu keeps a close eye on the action
Cafu keeps a close eye on the action

The Lay’s RePlay initiative was created in conjunction with the UEFA Foundation and streetfootballworld as an evolution from the pitches developed in the Za’atari and Azraq refugee camps in Jordan, which have provided access to sport for 35,000 people.

The programme promotes long-term positive social change through sport and education, using the power of football to promote social inclusion and teach essential life skills such as teamwork and fair play.

Through local partnerships in Brazil with love.fútbol and the EPROCAD Foundation, more than 100 young people will benefit directly from the initiative over the next 12 months, with more than 16,000 community members able to access the new pitch.

Suelen Cristina Souza, 15, EPROCAD Foundation student:

"What I like most about football is to play as a striker. To score a goal is a unique feeling for me! I feel that, here at the EPROCAD Foundation, inclusion is fundamental to the programme. To have girls and boys playing together has an impact on the lives and vision of the participants."

Wagner Mendes Dias, EPROCAD teacher and former student:

"I have no doubt that this field will generate a very important impact on the lives of our students because besides being beautiful, it is a space of impressive quality and structure. The neighborhood residents and our students don't usually have access to a quality sports infrastructure like this. I am looking forward to the inauguration of this field, to teaching my classes there, and also being able to play together with the students and residents of the community as well."

The UEFA Foundation and its global projects