AIFF gets help to refurbish stadia | sports | Hindustan Times
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AIFF gets help to refurbish stadia

On the day it formalised a Rs 700 crore, 15-year deal with Reliance-IMG, the All India Football Federation announced it is getting the Jindal Steel Group to refurbish two stadia - an important step in shoring up infrastructure. It's raining money

sports Updated: Dec 10, 2010 00:22 IST
Tomojit Basu

On the day it formalised a Rs 700 crore, 15-year deal with Reliance-IMG, the All India Football Federation (AIFF) announced it is getting the Jindal Steel Group to refurbish two stadia - an important step in shoring up infrastructure.

For the Rabindra Sarovar stadium in Kolkata, the AIFF has entered into a 30-year lease agreement with the state government, also a first. The one in Bangalore is owned by the Karnataka state football association. An AIFF official, who didn't want to be named, told HT that the steel major is committed to giving Rs 100 crore to each stadium.

"The Cooperage in Mumbai had a PIL all this while which is now looking like it will be resolved. RIL-IMG is planning to install floodlights in football stadiums, which would be a step forward. Also, FIFA has agreed to give AIFF $2 million (Rs 9.01 crore approx.) for infrastructure upgradation," said AIFF president Praful Patel at a media conference following the annual general meeting here on Thursday.

Asked how the AIFF plans to utilise money given by Reliance-IMG, general secretary Kushal Das said: "As of now, we are looking at developing training centres. We begin talks tomorrow (Friday)." Patel said through the joint-venture, the AIFF is keen on setting up an academy here as well as send more youngsters to the IMG Soccer Academy in Florida. Sixteen under-14 players selected by the AIFF are already training at the academy since September. The president also said RIL-IMG will rope in a title-sponsor and broadcast partner for I-League IV at the earliest.

India, China hotspots for FIFA
London:
FIFA is looking to gain 'a foothold' in India and China.

"The next regions (where) we need to gain a foothold in are China and India," said FIFA president Sepp Blatter.