Addressing the media in Bhubaneswar on 27th August, Tournament Director of the Local Organising Committee, Ms Roma Khanna congratulated the State. “We are happy to give a provisional clearance to the city of Bhubaneswar and confirm them as the first venue for the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup to be provisionally selected. I would like to congratulate the State of Odisha for being part of what is sure to be a cornerstone event for women’s football in the country. There is work remaining, and the State government has to bring up the stadium and the training sites to FIFA standards. But we are satisfied with the commitment exhibited by the Government to complete all the work that is required to obtain the full ratification,” she said.
The FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup India 2020 will have a lasting influence in sports in India and Odisha, and will upgrade the infrastructure to FIFA standards. Kalinga Stadium will become the first to host a FIFA competition in Odisha.
Hon’ble Minister for Sports and Youth Services, Odisha, Shri Tusharkanti Behera was immensely proud at the prospect of hosting the FIFA competition in Bhubaneswar. He said, “We feel delighted to announce that Bhubaneswar is the first city to receive the provisional clearance to host the prestigious FIFA Women’s U-17 World Cup. It will be the first global football tournament for women in the country and a huge honour for the State to host such a prestigious tournament of the world’s most popular sport. Our girls have proved their mettle in the sports of Rugby, Hockey among others, and I believe that through the football Legacy Programmes we are planning in the State as part of this World Cup, we will be laying a strong foundation for the development of women’s football”.
Also present at the press conference was Commissioner-cum-Secretary, Department of Sports and Youth Services, Odisha, Shri Vishal K Dev. He added, “It is a prestigious moment for us to be associated with a FIFA World Cup and prospectively add Bhubaneswar to the list of some top cities of the world that have hosted a FIFA World Cup game. Currently, we are developing and upgrading our infrastructure as per the FIFA guidelines and are confident of getting the final clearance for the event. I am confident that the event will make a positive impact and help create a football ecosystem for the youth of the State”.
The final inspection will take place later this year, at which point, the venue has to be fully compliant. Based on this, it will receive full ratification by FIFA and be confirmed as the Host City for the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup India 2020.
The FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup will be the first FIFA competition for women in the country and the second overall to be held in India.