This man’s ‘goal’ is football!
Biplab Ghosh, 63, cannot live without football. So much so that he even dreams about soccer during day. His passion for the game was so intense that Biplab often used to mortgage jewellery of his wife to conduct the famous Patu Mazumdar Football Tournament in Allahabad from 1984 to 1998.
To say football is in his genes would be an understatement as his father Amlendu Ghosh, another soccer lover, was founder secretary of the prestigious Allahabad Sporting Club. Ghosh senior had started the Mazumdar football tourney in 1945, two years before the Independence, a tradition his son followed.
In 1999 Biplab established Uttar Pradesh’s best football academy—Allahabad Sporting Football Academy—that is running successfully at the Anglo Bengali School ground in Sangam City. The academy was set up with an aim to let young footballers prove their mettle. While benefitting from the top coaches with Shadab Raza, former UP captain as the head coach, the academy has so far produced three international and more than 60 national level players. At present, the academy is being financed by Petroleum Sports Promotion Board.
“There is no chance of disassociating myself with football as I grew up listening about and seeing football even at my home. I am thrilled by the game and that’s why I am associated with it even after my retirement,” said Biplab, who is aiming to start a tournament for young footballers of Allahabad at a time when World Cup Football is set to start in Russia from June 14.
There would be 15-20 teams each in under-12, under-17 and under-21 tournaments, starting after June 20. “It’s an occasion to give young footballers to enjoy the game in the shadow of the World Cup commencement,” he says.
“I always wanted to let my passion for the game continue. Seeing young kids kicking the ball makes me feel so happy,” says Biplab, who doesn’t sleep without watching a football match every day. “I can live without food and water throughout the day but not without football,” he adds.
His passion for the game is evident as many players from the academy have made it to India’s top professional football clubs and academies. Around 25 trainees are doing jobs under sports quota in various government offices. Not only individually but also as a team, the academy has won many national and state level tournaments recognised by All India Football Federation.
Only this year, trainees like Utkarsh Kant Srivastava, Siemens Singh, Vikalp Jha, Arjun Kumar, Asher Peter, Sachin Sharma, Rahul Kisku, Arpit Das, Utkarsh Singh, Ankit Tiwari, Abhishek Yadav, Sachin Sharma, Naushad, Wasim, Utkarsh Singh, Gaurav Maurya made their present felt at the national level, whereas Rahul Anand, Vikas Nishad and Nitin Kaushal represented India in the under-15 Asian Pacific Football Championship at Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
Amit Kumar, Sheran Ayubi, Meesam Raza, Sujeet Kumar Sonkar attended national camps too.
“In fact, the academy has become a production house of footballers,” says Biplab with pride before turning away to give tips to an aspiring soccer player.
Enter your email to get our daily newsletter in your inbox
- The Irishman was fighting for only the third time in the last five years. Since his rise to superstardom, McGregor’s activity inside the Octagon had started to decline. He fought 8 times in the 2014-2016 period. But in the next 4 years, McGregor had only 3 MMA fights.
- It was the first time that McGregor lost a match by a technical knockout.
- Either side of the Covid bout though Rankireddy ensured he trained regularly to keep fitness levels up. That was on show during the two Thailand Opens—where the Indian campaign ended on Saturday.
- Ashley Barnes’ 83rd minute penalty ended the Reds’ 68-match unbeaten run at home in the Premier League that stretched back to April, 2017.
- Narsingh Pancham Yadav, returning to action after four years of doping suspension, had a very good start as he defeated young Gaurav Baliyan, the defending champion, without breaking much sweat (10-0), but lost a close bout to Dhankar (4-3) in the next round.
- It is something of an unprecedented move that a WWE show will be produced specially for the Indian audience and will showcase a lot of top WWE superstars. WWE haven’t done that for a non-UK, non-US population and it shows how much the company values the country in their growth plans.