Sports Minister Kiren Rijiju has committed to provide “extra financial help” to boost growth of Indian football, according to the All India Football Federation (AIFF).
Rijiju made the statement on the sidelines of the Hero Intercontinental Cup in Ahmedabad.
“We have seen certain improvements in our men’s as well as women’s football in recent times. From the sports ministry, we will provide extra financial help wherever it’s possible to scout, and nurture young talents as well as for the professional training, and other events,” Rijiju said in an interview to the AIFF.
The Minister didn’t hide his affinity for football and said his ministry will put more attention to better training, coaching and facilities.
“The ministry of sports will provide whatever is required for better training, coaching, facilities, and other demands and requirements whichever will be placed by the AIFF. We’ll always be there,” Rijiju said.
“I’m very enthusiastic about supporting any kind of sport in India, and football is very special for me,” he added and also praised the senior Indian women’s team for its recent rise in the FIFA rankings which were released on July 12.
“I must compliment the women’s team for rising to 57 in the FIFA rankings recently. That’s a huge jump. I’m very confident that the standard of the women’s team will rise further,” Rijiju said.
“Football is the biggest game in terms of popularity, reach, size. We also have to put a lot of effort to improve our football. Be it a village or a city, football is a game which can be played anywhere. I’m very hopeful that the standard of Indian football will rise in the years to come.”