With the news about FC Goa being slapped with an 11 crore fine and 15 points being deducted from the next season, Goan football was heading for a downfall as their season was over before it started. The plan on merging the I-League and the Indian Super League brought further disappointment to die hard football fans in Goa, as some household Goan teams may not be accepted into the new top tier.
However, the football fans in Goa have something to cheer about and be proud of as eleven year old Narendra Naik from the village of Sangolda has become the first Goan to be selected for the Reliance Foundation Champs Academy.
What does Reliance Foundation do?
Reliance Foundation conducts and funds a yearly program by providing a full time residential scholarship to the most talented boys and girls handpicked through Clubs’ grassroots activities as well as select NGO’s. The scholarships are not only aimed at developing the wards football abilities but also enhancing their academic acumen, thus providing the selected children a well round sporting and educational environment to thrive in.
With the news that the young champs will play premier league clubs as part of further training, comes as great news as it will be a platform and exposure for the young Indian feet.
Narendra along with 17 other candidates will join the existing crop of talent in their academy in Mumbai. He was one among the 18 and the first Goan to be shortlisted for the camp to be held in Mumbai where players underwent a challenging program. The program was aimed at teaching the kids valuable football skills and some theoretical sessions and seminars.
Narendra emerged as one of the top 17 out of the participating 158 candidates and earned his place at the academy where the camp is set to commence from the 15th of June.
We wish Narendra all the very best and hope that the kids of today take this opportunity and look up to him as a role model to motivate themselves to follow their dreams of playing for our country one day!