The All India Football Federation (AIFF) received the AFC Developing Member Association Award for 2016 in the Asian Football Confederation’s Annual awards night, a glittering ceremony held at the Emirates Palace in Abu Dhabi. AIFF president Mr Praful Patel received the honour from AFC president Mr Ali Kafashian.
The award is given as an honour to a member association for its professional administration and governance as well as for exceptional contribution to the development and promotion of the game at all levels within the country.
“I need to thank AFC for recognising our efforts. Indian Football is headed in the right direction,” Mr Patel said. The member associations are also assessed and awarded points based on various areas surrounding the association’s activities such as the organizing courses and seminars, competitions, grass roots and youth development, women’s programmes, social responsibility and special projects.
Points are also allocated based on the nation’s hosting of AFC qualifying and finals tournaments and their national and club teams’ performances in the AFC and FIFA competitions throughout the year.
The AIFF has conducted 20 Grassroots Leaders Courses while 600 Grassroots coaches were trained in the year of 2016 with around 12 states implementing the AIFF grassroots philosophy by setting up Grassroots Centres.
2016, a successful year for football in India
The Indian football team achieved its best FIFA ranking in over six years this year when the side jumped 11 places to become 137th after beating 114th ranked Puerto Rico in an international friendly back in September. I-League side JSW Bengaluru FC also created history by becoming the first Indian club to reach the AFC Cup final only to narrowly go down to Iraq’s Air Force Club in Doha.
Furthermore, in an effort to increase the number of AFC licensed coaches in the country, the AIFF conducted 29 AFC courses which included 2 AFC A License courses, 5 AFC B License courses, 20 AFC C License courses and 2 AFC Goalkeeping Level 1 courses. As a result, 210 coaches received their AFC certification through the above-mentioned coaching courses.
This is the second time that AIFF has received an AFC award. In 2014, AIFF won the AFC President’s Recognition Award for grassroots football.
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