THE BLOG BY CPD FOOTBALL | The World of Indian football and beyond by Chris Punnakkattu Daniel

adidas announces #FirstNeverFollows challenge to gain trial with FC Pune City

adidas today announced the #FirstNeverFollows challenge in association with Indian Super League (ISL) franchise FC Pune City to give young footballers a chance at not only securing a week long professional trial with FC Pune City but also to win a boot deal worth Rs.50,000 from adidas. The #FirstNeverFollows challenge will give aspiring football players a once in a lifetime shot at turning professional.

To participate in the #FirstNeverFollows challenge, customers need to visit any of adidas’ leading stores between July 25 and August 31 and get details on participation. Upon registration upto 100 players shall be shortlisted by adidas and FC Pune City and invited to undertake the skills contest at FC Pune City’s training centre. The top 5 players as selected by FC Pune City’s coaches from the skills contest shall be offered a professional trial with the ISL club. If the players impress the coaches during their trials, FC Pune City has the option to offer the player(s) a professional contract.

Commenting on the challenge, Damyant Singh, Sr. Marketing Director, adidas India, said, “Football in India is growing rapidly with many young players aspiring to turn professional. If cricket is a religion in India, football is the passion. We at adidas want to ensure that young, budding football players in the country get an opportunity to showcase their talent and achieve their dream of turning pro. The #FirstNeverFollows challenge will give them a chance to train with the best and also a once in a lifetime opportunity to interact with the FC Pune City team. The interaction with the players will surely inspire and encourage the youngsters to continue pursuing their passion for football.”

Adding to this, Gaurav Modwel, FC Pune City CEO, said, “FC Pune City has always believed in promoting young players to the team. #FirstNeverFollows challenge will allow us to directly engage with the players and give them a chance to showcase their skills. The selected players will be evaluated by our coaches at FC Pune City, ensuring that they get the best experience of the game and a chance to win a professional contract with us. We are hoping to unearth some exciting talent!”

India midfielder Eugeneson Lyngdoh said, “The #FirstNeverFollows Challenge is a great initiative from adidas and FC Pune City to give aspiring young players an once-in-a-lifetime shot at achieving their dream of becoming pro footballers. Such opportunities are perfect to spur the growth of football as whole in India. I am looking forward to seeing the players in action in Pune and hope that we can find someone special to represent FC Pune City in the coming ISL seasons!”

(adidas Press Release)