With an aim to promote football from grassroots to elite, the state government's Department of Sports and Youth Services, in association with All India Football Federation (AIFF) and Football Association Odisha (FAO) on Wednesday, launched the AIFF E-Certificate course.
Over the next two weeks, three batches of E-Certificate course, of 24 participants each, will be conducted by AIFF. The E-certificate program is the first step in a coach's development pathway and is an attempt to develop quality grassroots coaches in different parts of the state.
Encouraging the coaches, Principal Secretary, Sports, Vishal K Dev said, "The Government of Odisha had signed a memoranda of understanding with AIFF, as part of which, there would be initiatives planned for the development of the football ecosystem in Odisha."
"Not only in our state, but across the country, one of the biggest deterrents to producing quality footballers is the age at which a boy or a girl is initiated to quality football training. While the broader meng of grassroots football is quite elaborate, the focus of the E-certificate course on training coaches to impart football coaching in the right way to age groups 6-12 is crucial in football pedagogy in our state and country," he added.
Dev further said, "The AIFF E-certificate program is the first step in a coach's development pathway, and we are hopeful that this initiative will encourage you to develop your own self and take up further upskilling through the D, C, B licence and so on."
He said, "We had recently announced that our Sports Hostels would also be running day boarding programs, and in football, our focus will be to target the age categories of 6-12 as part of the day boarding program. Also, in a phased manner, we will push to kick-start these grassroots football training programs in a majority of districts in Odisha and create a pool of talented young footballers in the state."
"Young footballers will have the opportunity to make the best use of other opportunities that the government has provided for them - Residential Sports Hostels, AIFF HPC youth teams, Odisha FC youth teams etc to further their football careers," Dev said further.
( With inputs from ANI )
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