The week long final selection camp for Reliance Foundation’s inaugural Young Champs football grassroots program commenced at the Father Agnel multi sports complex facility in Vashi, New Mumbai on Wednesday.
A total of 200 promising talents under the age group of 11 to 14 years – being selected through the ISL clubs’ multi-layer grassroots festivals across country – are participating in the final selection camp expected to go on till 26th May 2015.
The talents will be further put through a program that will test their skills as well as their ability to communicate – leading to the selection of final set of children for the Young Champ scholarship in ‘Under 12’, Under 13’ and ‘Under 14’ age categories, spanning three to five years.
The final list of children selected for the Reliance Foundation Young Champs residential football scholarship program, will be announced on 27th May 2015.
Chairperson, Reliance Foundation and Indian Super League, Nita Ambani said, “Young Champs grassroots program is the soul of Indian Super League where we envisage to identify promising talents and provide the means to groom them to be the next generation professional footballers. I am happy to see the commitment shown by our ISL partners on the grassroots festivals and in helping Reliance Foundation identify these promising talents for the Young Champs final scholarship selection.”
Marcus Michael Vaessen, an experienced grassroots coach having worked in this age group in NEC Nijmegen – a top Dutch Academy, has been appointed as the Head Talent Performance Coach for Reliance Foundation’s Young Champ program. Marcus, with his rich and varied experience spanning nearly 19 years and having trained players like Dutch keeper Jasper Cillissen is a Member of CBV (Professional Coaches Union), will be in-charge of the RF Young Champs program.
70 children coming through Atletico de Kolkata’s grassroots festival is the largest group from West Bengal for the Reliance Foundation Young Champs final selection, followed by North East United FC’s 25 from Assam and North East region, Kerala Blasters FC’s 24 from Kerala, Mumbai City FC’s 20 from Mumbai and its suburbs, Chennaiyin FC’s 17 from Tamil Nadu, Delhi Dynamos and FC Pune City each 15 and FC Goa’s 14.