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India to host 2016 AFC U-16 Championship

India U-16 national team

India U-16 national team

The Asian Football Confederation (AFC) have officially confirmed India as hosts of the 2016 AFC U-16 Championship Finals. With reference to the Championship, the AFC in a letter to all its Member Associations declared India as the host nation of the Finals.

It was more than a year back in May 2014 that the All India Football Federation (AIFF) had first expressed its interest in hosting the continental championship. The AIFF believes the championship is a perfect build up to India hosting the 2017 FIFA U-17 World Cup.

Speaking on the occasion, the AIFF General Secretary Kushal Das said, “The AFC U-16 Championship will enable our National Team to gain valuable experience before 2017 while also giving us a great opportunity to test our organisational capabilities before the FIFA U 17 World Cup in 2017.”

Furthermore, the Indian U-16 National Team will also be participating in the AFC U-16 Qualifiers in September 2015. The draw for the Qualifiers will be held on June 5, 2015 in Malaysia. While India as host nation have already qualified, the team will also be participating in the qualifiers to give them the maximum international exposure in the lead up to the tournament.

Meanwhile, Bahrain will host the AFC U-19 Championship 2016 Finals.

(Report & Photo courtesy: AIFF Media)