India's first ever FIFA U-17 World Cup final to be held in Kolkata
The Yuba Bharati Krirangan is all set to host the nation's first ever FIFA World Cup final.
The FIFA U-17 World Cup Inspection committee is all set to make their last stadium visit to India on March 22 and announce the much awaited final venue for the country’s first ever edition. A team headed by Jamie Yarza will visit all six shortlisted stadiums for the footballing extravaganza, scheduled to begin on October 6.
Sources close to Local Organising Committee (LOC) confirmed that Kolkata’s iconic Salt Lake stadium is the front-runner to host the final in a closely fought contest. The decision will be taken after the final inspection day on March 27.
A senior member told Sportskeeda, “If everything goes per planned, Kolkata will be the venue for the final as the inspection committee is also keeping in mind the most popular region for the sport. Navi Mumbai’s D Y Patil stadium was also an option, due to vast amount of facilities already in place.
However, if you see the transformation of Yuba Bharati Krirangan over the past six months you will be amazed. Javier Ceppi and team, along with the support of the state government have transformed the stadium. With the number of people it can hold, it will be the most iconic venue in India. Unless something major is spotted during the final inspection, it will be Kolkata.”
Last year, we had reported that Kolkata had impressed the FIFA Inspection Committee calling the venue ‘world class’. It seems that their decision has stood the test of time and awarded one of India’s most passionate football states a night to remember.
Our source added, “The bucket seats have added another dimension to the stadium, along with a well-equipped media center which was the major requirement. The Inspection Committee could envisage a potential final venue from their first visit, but it needed some restructuring. The state government was helpful during the entire process.”
The inspection begins with Nehru Stadium in Delhi on March 22, then Goa (March 23) Kochi (March 24), Navi Mumbai (March 25), Guwahati (March 26) and finally end with Kolkata on March 27. This is where the opener, semis and finals venues will be announced. Each city has been assigned four training grounds, with the group draw taking place on July 7.