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Catch-them-young is the mantra

The Indian junior football team has another reason to cheer apart from celebrating their senior counterparts' Nehru Cup victory. On Tuesday, the All India Football Federation (AIFF) announced its association with Coca Cola for the Sub Junior National Football Championship.

sports Updated: Sep 01, 2009 23:35 IST
HT Correspondent

The Indian junior football team has another reason to cheer apart from celebrating their senior counterparts' Nehru Cup victory. On Tuesday, the All India Football Federation (AIFF) announced its association with Coca Cola for the Sub Junior National Football Championship.

This grassroots level championship will aim to discover promising young footballers in the country for the under-16 national team.

Sixteen players will be chosen from the championships and they will go to Coca-Cola International Football Camp to be organised during the 2010 World Cup in South Africa.

Alberto Colaco, AIFF general secretary, said the championships would be played in two phases with the participants being divided into four groups.

"Ten teams will play in the final round," Colaco said.

Bhaichung Bhutia and Sunil Chhetri applauded the initiative to improve the game from the grassroots level.

Chhetri observed that the junior level game had improved dramatically and gave the youngsters more time to flourish now.