Kerala Blasters and Gokulam Kerala are involved in a govenment initiative to set up academies in the state…
The government of Kerala has announced plans to set up residential football academies across the state with the help of the Indian Super League (ISL) club Kerala Blasters and I-League club Gokulam Kerala.
According to the sources close to the developments, the clubs have won a government tender which sets in motion the plan to set up the government football academies.
The institutions, which will have opportunities for the U-14, U-17 and U-20 categories of both boys and girls. will be based out of Kannur, Ernakulam and Trivandrum. It has been learnt that the Malabarians will operate the academy for girls in Kannur and Blasters will run the academies in Thiruvananthapuram and Ernakulam as part of a five-year deal.
The scouting for these government academies will be done across Kerala and the project was announced by Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijaya via video conference on Thursday. “Not so long ago, Kerala had good women’s teams in football. We aim to return to the glory days. The government also plans to promote girls’ football at school and college levels,” said Vijayan.
He further added, “It is encouraging that several private football academies are sprouting out throughout the state. But, it has been found that some are not doing justice, their greed is destroying the careers of players and that must not be encouraged.”
The Kerala CM has also revealed that the government is planning to ready playgrounds under all local bodies. He said, “The process of developing basic sports infrastructure is ongoing in the state. Once complete, the state will have 40 new football grounds.”
Kerala Blasters are currently preparing for the eighth season of ISL which will be held behind closed doors and inside a bio-secure bubble in Goa.
Gokulam Kerala will have their men’s and women’s teams play in Asian tournaments this season. Both the men’s teams of the two Kerala clubs are currently in West Bengal to take part in the Durand Cup.