Football is a social and cultural phenomenon that goes beyond a sport in Uruguay. Football is an important element in the cultural identity of the people of this country. This may be the only explanation of the numerous successes at both clubs and national teams level in the smallest country of South America, with only 3.5 million inhabitants.
In 1930, Uruguay defeated Argentina in the final match at home and won the World Cup for the first time and surprised the whole world by defeating Brazil in the final of the 1950 World Cup in Maracaná stadium. This success is known as “Maracanazo” by all football fans around the world. Uruguay National Team also have won gold medals in the 1924 and 1928 Olympics. Moreover, Uruguay is the country with the most Copa America championship.
The football passion and good-quality youth academies that Uruguay have is the basic secret of their successes. Nowadays, global and systematic training methods are applied in youth academies of Uruguayan football clubs. In addition, a large number of tournaments organized between youth academy teams prepare young footballers to professional level. So that, the total number of matches played between youth academy teams -in all age categories- every weekend is 3000.
The average age of Uruguay 1st football league is 25.4. The youngest team has an average of 23.8 and the oldest team has an average of 27.2. Uruguay has a younger average age than most European leagues.
Considering the purposes and scope of the PreFootball program, Uruguay is one of the most suitable center for young football embassies. While young footballers getting good-quality of football education, they will find also an opportunity to observe and recognize a nation that have put the football at the center of their lives.