AIFF-FIFA academy to be launched on November 21 in Bhubaneswar

    The Hawk
    November17/ 2023
    Last Updated:

    AIFF president Kalyan Chaubey and Arsene Wenger

    New Delhi [India]: The long-awaited aspiration of the All India Football Federation (AIFF) to set up a world-class academy will finally become a reality in Bhubaneswar, Odisha, on November 21, 2023.
    The AIFF-FIFA academy, to be launched under the FIFA Talent Development Scheme, will be inaugurated by Arsene Wenger, the Chief of Global Football Development, FIFA and former manager of the English football club, Arsenal, as per an AIFF press release.

    The FIFA TDS is a programme aimed at collaborating with different member associations across the world to increase the competitiveness of their national teams. The FIFA has also rolled out its Talent Coaching Programme, with which it intends to provide active on-ground support to the member associations.
    Commenting on the development, AIFF President Kalyan Chaubey said, "Arsene Wenger will be here in India from November 19 to 23. During this period, he and his team will meet ISL, I-League clubs and all those who are involved with youth development in Indian football."

    "In the past, we have seen several academies coming up in India. Taking a cue from it, our efforts would be to build this academy into a flawless one. We are confident that Wenger's vast experience and keen understanding of things would be of huge help in turning this academy into a world-class facility. I personally remain grateful to the FIFA President, Gianni Infantino for taking the initiative and for sending Wenger to India."
    AIFF Acting Secretary General Satyanarayan M said, "This is a giant step towards our long-term vision and investing in youth as young as below 14 is perhaps the greatest start. We will start working on similar endeavours in other parts of the country to ensure talent does not get overlooked. It is certainly exciting times for Indian Football."

    R Vineel Krishna, IAS, Commissioner-cum-Secretary, Sports and Youth Service Department, Government of Odisha, said, "We are very excited that Bhubaneswar has been selected for the FIFA Talent Academy. The Chief Minister of Odisha, Naveen Patnaik, has directed us to provide all support for the development of football in India. We are working in close partnership with AIFF to create the best facilities for our football players."
    FIFA has recommended Sergi Amezcua Fontrodona as the FIFA-trained coach, who will relocate to India to implement the project and act as the head coach at the FIFA-AIFF academy.
    Amezcua has been a FIFA TDS Coach since August 2023 and has previously had the experience of developing football in China, as the Project Director at the Barca Academy Pro Haikou.