Topden Mishael Karthak
It cannot be disputed that the future belongs to the youth. This rings true with football also. Nurturing talent from a young age has always been a key to the success of any football club.
However, the Darjeeling hills have lacked behind in the process of forming a good youth system which is a need for this football-loving region.
Sports Association has always taken an initiative during the winter holidays organizing winter football camps all over the hills but it hardly helps the development of these young players because it´s held just for a couple of months.
A football academy is a place where junior footballers learn the skills to become professionals. For young players, it´s important to learn the foundation and technique in order to become a professional.
Recently Gorkhaland Territorial Administration has planned to constitute G.T.A mountaineering and adventure sports foundation to encourage sports in the hills which might help football associations to work on the academy system.
One of the respected clubs from Darjeeling hills Share FC Kalimpong recently organized baby league which is still going on under three categories u9,u11, and u13. Share F.C´s youth academy is only a few of academies in the hills which is still working smoothly and has been doing with their youth system as their u18 won the first edition of u18 G.T.A Gold Cup 2018.
Mario Sitling founder member of Apex F.C and presently working as general secretary of the club expressed his views.
Talking to Goalie365 Mr. Sitling stated “It is extremely important for us to think about opening new academies in our region if we want to take football to a new stage and produce players who can represent in the national and international stage.
He clearly stated that if the academy functions well, it will attract the attention of big clubs in and around the nation for new talents.
Mr. Prashant Pradhan coach of United Brothers Kalimpong and S.U.M.I school team too expressed his views on why do we need football academies and what are the factors when setting up.
Mr. Pradhan stated “There are some factors we have to consider 1) Vision 2) Education and Scouting 3) Infrastructure 4)Coaching and 5)Finance.
He also added “The most important thing is that the academy should provide security in all aspect to the players. We have academies like SAI there is a lot to be done by institute like SAI”.
To help young players achieve what they dream of -a better life, success, and glory, football academies can create an environment of positive atmosphere and competition among the players and also an emotional bond by having to create fond memories of all the young players and coaches together.
Now Darjeeling´s football Clubs should look at the need of academies for young players and should work with the administration to set up football academies all over the hills for the better future and professional career of these young football players.
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