Mesut Ozil launches development centre for South Asians

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Germany won the 2014 World Cup with Ozil

Mesut Ozil and Football for Peace have teamed up to create a centre for South Asians living in England.

The centre will be located at the University of Bradford. It will also "run football and life skills sessions" at Bradford's League Two training ground.

Ozil stated, "I want them to be promoted and give them the opportunity to succeed both on and off of the pitch."

"I come from a diverse ethnic background and can understand the challenges."

Ozil, a former Arsenal and Real Madrid player, was born in Gelsenkirchen, Germany.

He played 92 times for Germany, helping them win the 2014 World Cup.

After leaving Arsenal in January on a free transfer, Ozil is now at Turkish side Fenerbahce.

He said, "I've always been amazed that the South Asian community is only allowed to watch the game." "Why isn't there more professional football players and managers?"

"I hope that the Football for Peace Mesut Ozil Center will be the platform they need."

Only 11 South Asians, representing a population greater than three million in the UK, have ever played professional football here.

Kashif Siddiqi, a former British South Asian football player, is the co-founder and coordinator of Football for Peace. The centre in Bradford will be the "first" as part of a national initiative.

Its goal is to provide pathways to elite football and education for members from ethnically diverse communities. Several Premier League and English Football League clubs have signed up to this initiative.