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Institutional League will have a domino effect on grassroots football: Dronacharya awardee Bimal Ghosh

24 May 2023

New Delhi [India], May 24 (ANI): In a bid to restructure and revitalise football activities within public sector enterprises, the Federation announced in April, that they would launch an Institutional League at the national level that would provide an avenue for players employed by them. The 10-team league will be played on a home-and-away basis, with entries decided via a bidding process.

Even at this early stage of ideation and development, the news has been received with enthusiasm and excitement, especially among players and coaches who have a history of success with PSU teams.

Dronacharya awardee Bimal Ghosh, widely regarded as one of India finest coaches, was enthused at the possibility of the league and expected it to boost and revitalise recruitment and employment within the sector. Ghosh coached Air India for over a decade at a time when the team played in the National Football League and the I-League.

"In my opinion, the gradual reduction and death of institutional teams was a big blow for players who desired economic safety nets and jobs," Ghosh said as quoted by the All India Football Federation (AIFF).

"This move will definitely increase recruitment and even encourage many PSUs to start hiring more footballers which in turn will have a domino effect on the overall grassroots itself. Youngsters will play the game more, just knowing that they could get a job through it."Ghosh, widely heralded as being the man responsible for the development of many players, who donned the India jersey -- a list that includes Godfrey Pereira, Naushad Moosa, Mohammed Yusuf Ansari, Khalid Jamil, Steven Dias, Sanju Pradhan and Nirmal Chettri -- says that despite burgeoning professional clubs and leagues across different states, the role of the PSU can never be undermined. Their infrastructure, ability to offer jobs and attract young sportspersons are huge reasons that many still go down the tried and tested route of the secured jobs. (ANI)

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