Why India became the hosts for the 2017 U-17 World Cup
When Delhi won the bid to host the Commonwealth Games beating the bid of Canadian city Hamilton in 2003, it was a moment heralded as India taking its rightful place at the world stage.
It was to be a display of a young country’s high reaching ambitions, an opportunity to show the world that India can dine at the same table as the big boys.
The Government of India pledged its complete support to the mammoth project and it was seen as a prelude to a future Olympic bid. With China preparing to host the Olympic around the same time, India was not going to be left far behind.
Multiple venues including the athletes’ village were not even ready by the time the international athletes arrived in the city. Various infrastructure delays, corruption scandals, budget overshoots and shoddy constructions had marred the build up to the event.
Various teams and individual athletes threatened to pull out at the last-minute and only some last ditch overtures by the organizers somehow managed to see the games through to its end.
While there were some encouraging words said towards the end of the Games by the participants, there was no doubt that the ability of the country to pull off such global events had taken a massive hit.
The ability to host the Olympic Games seemed like an overture too far for the country as China rightly showed what India lacked in 2008.
The infrastructure put together by the Communist state put to shame the shoddy work done in Delhi.
In December 2013, the FIFA Executive Committee announced India as the hosts for the 2017 U-17 World Cup, beating bids from South Africa and Uzbekistan.
How Kochi prepared
He said the decision to ratify Kochi as venue has been taken after discussing it with all the stakeholders.
“There are a few things that need to be completed, few things that need to be done. We would keep monitoring closely, would closely work with the government of Kerala to make sure that all the readiness is there and all the compliance is there for the World Cup,” Ceppi said.
The tournament director said a lot of work has been put in areas people generally don’t see.
“From sewage facilities to toilets, it’s all been taken care of really well and that for me is very commendable. State government now needs to focus on finishing the work at the stadium and especially the training sites within very tight deadlines, but overall it is commendable how the venue has shaped up,” he said.
Tracy Lu, project lead for the World Cup, said the preparations at one of India’s footballing hotbeds is fit for this stature.
“We are extremely happy with the progress we see here; from our last inspection a lot of development already taking place and that’s extremely encouraging. The dressing rooms, for instances have been renovated and a lot of other construction work has been initiated. I believe thus that it would make for a terrific World Cup venue,” Lu said.
Besides Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium, the team also visited the prospective training grounds in Kochi — Parade Ground, Fort Kochi Veli Football Ground, Maharajas College Ground and Government Boys High School Panampilly Nagar.
The delegation will visited Navi Mumbai also.
Byju Raveendran, founder and CEO of Byju’s – The Learning App, said: “We are excited to be a National Supporter of the first-ever FIFA World Cup in India. At Byju’s, we strongly believe in the holistic development of the student through both curricular and co-curricular learning, where sport plays an integral role. Football is fast gaining popularity in India among school students and this World Cup will increase it further.”
The World Cup will be held across 6 cities – New Delhi, Navi Mumbai, Goa, Kochi, Guwahati and Kolkata – from October 6. India have been drawn in Group A alongside USA, Colombia and Ghana. The hosts face USA on October 6, followed by Colombia and Ghana on October 9 and October 12 respectively at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in New Delhi.
The World Cup will be broadcast live on Sony Ten 2 and Sony Ten 3.
Book your tickets at http://tickets.india2017wc.com/
Category 1 – 800 INR
Category 2 – 400 INR
Category 3 – 200 INR
Category 4 – 80 INR
The event will be the 17th edition of the FIFA U-17 World Cup, and its slogan, “Football takes over” is on the tongue of every football lover in the world. So, if you are a football fan too, keen on watching the historic event from up close, it’s time to book your seat.