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China rejects India U16 football team's tour of the country, Indonesia sojourn also called off

Vrinda Chopra
2.47K   //    30 Apr 2018, 11:53 IST

Under-16 Indian Football Team
Under-16 Indian Football Team

What’s the story?

All India Football Federation’s (AIFF) request to host the under-16 nationalfootball team has been rejected by China. AIFF has been on an extensive spree for the exposure of the Young Colts. With the U-16 AFC Championship all set to kick off in Malaysia this September, the Federation plans to give the young boys as much international exposure as possible, in order for the team to be well prepared for the upcoming tournament.

In case you didn’t know…

Having played competitive sides such as Norway and the United States of America during India’s tour of Spain at the Sport Chain Cup, the next destination for the U-16 boys is Serbia as a part of the exposure tour. The blue colts will face the U-16 teams of Tajikistan as well as the hosts, Serbia.

Heart of the matter

The AIFF was amid talks with China to organize a series of football matches between the nations’ under-16 sides, however, the neighbours have refused the Indian offer to host the Colts’. The Federation has also decided to cancel India’s Indonesian tour since the two countries will be in the same group at the U-16 AFC Championship.

Japan could also be one of the prospective destinations for the young Indian side to travel to post their time in Serbia. After a display of splendid performances against nations like Hong Kong, Singapore and the likes earlier this year, a lot of hopes and expectations will be riding on the shoulders of the youngsters to perform well and conquer their Serbian tour as well.

What’s next?

After China’s rejection to host the under-16 squad for a planned four-nation tournament, the AIFF could resort to approaching the Japan Football Association to enable the boys to carry on with their exposure tour.

Author’s take

The AIFF seems to be investing a good amount of time in the young boys in order to make a mark at this year’s AFC Championship in Malaysia. With a prize such as a chance to qualify for the 2019 Under-17 FIFA World Cup in Peru up for grabs, the governing body is really pushing the team forward and is determined to partake at the big stake.

China’s rejection should be treated as a minor hurdle, and the Federation should continue to provide maximum practice opportunities to the young lads thereby enabling maximum understanding within the squad.

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