FIFA U-17 World Cup: Goalkeeper Dheeraj Moirangthem's parents were against him playing football
What’s the story?
Rising star of Indian football, Moirangthem Dheeraj Singh is earning accolades from all corners. His heroics under the bar for India U-17 team in the on-going FIFA U17 World Cup have forced the football fraternity to take a note of him.
Interestingly, his parents were dead against of his passion for football. Dheeraj used to be a school topper and his parents wanted their son to pursue a different career. The little Dheeraj had no other option but to ask his maternal grandmother for his kits, football etc. His parents were present in the national capital to see their son saving the pride of the nation with both his hands.
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The locals in his neighbourhood initiated Dheeraj to football. Near his home lies a famous footballer of the state, Surendro Singh, who had taken part in the Santosh Trophy several times in 1980s and he was instrumental in Dheeraj playing in the inter-district U-14 Championships. Singh led his team to the championship and then participated in the U-14 championship in Kalyani, West Bengal.
From there, he was selected in the AIFF Elite Academy in Goa for the U-17 World Cup. Singh also represented India in U-16 the SAFF Championship in Kathmandu in 2013, where he was the number one goalkeeper.
The Heart of the Matter
Romit Singh, father of the Indian goalie said that his son was the topper in the school and also he used to take part in drama and painting. He further informed that Singh was very good in singing bhajans.
"Dheeraj was a bright student and he was a class topper in his school. I was against him playing football. I would not buy his football kits, so he had to ask his maternal grandmother to buy these football, boots and other things," said Romit.
Romit and his wife never supported football because in those days, they did not consider football as a viable career option. Singh is the only son, along with his two sisters.
There were reports that scouts from European clubs are watching Indian players like Dheeraj at the FIFA U-17 World Cup. Romit said the lanky Indian goalie has not told him anything about being contacted by these scouts. If he gets such an opportunity then it would surely be a great boost for him as well as a great pride for the nation.
It is understood that Singh has made a great impact for India U-17. He has impressed everyone and Indian coach Luis Norton de Matos said that he has a great future ahead. If he can keep a clean sheet against Ghana then it would be a great way to finish this gala tournament.