FIFA Gen Secy to meet Maken and corporate heads in India visit
New Delhi: FIFA secretary-general Jerome Valcke will review the various development projects initiated by the world body during his four-day visit to India starting from Wednesday, besides meeting some of the leading Indian industrialists.
At the top of the agenda will the meeting of the FIFA delegation, to be led by Valcke, with Sports Minister Ajay Maken and All India Football Association President Praful Patel to discuss how to take Indian football forward, the FIFA said in its official website.
The official inauguration of FIFA development office here and presentations at International Football Arena conference will be the other important engagements of the visit.
Valcke`s meeting with Maken will have the added significance as the world body would wants to get a clear picture of the Indian government`s support for the country`s bid for the 2017 FIFA Under-17 World Cup.
FIFA in principle has agreed to award India the hosting rights of the mega event.
Valcke, who will be accompanied by Director of Member Associations and Development, Thierry Regenass, will also review FIFA`s `Win in India with India` initiative, which has seen world football`s governing body investing USD 8 million into the construction of a technical centre in Mumbai as well as eight turf pitches in Mumbai, Shillong, Imphal, Bangalore, Kolkata, Pune and Goa.
"The visit is proof of FIFA`s continued commitment to India. We look forward to FIFA`s support in order to take Indian football to the next level," AIFF secretary general Kushal Das was quoted as saying in www.Fifa.Com.
"It`s our goal to further enhance our development and grassroots programmes, thus giving anyone who wants to embrace the game in India a chance to play. I believe in the next five to seven years we`ll see quite a few Indian players moving to Europe," he added.
The visit coincides with 75th year of AIFF`s foundation and 50 years since India`s second and, until now, last gold medal in the Asian Games football tournament.