The success of Women’s Football is high on the Federation’s list of priorities, and as per the objectives in Vision 2047. The-aiff.com is present with the U-20 Women’s National Team in Chennai, to follow the upcoming stars of Indian Women's Football in their AFC U-20 Women's Asian Cup campaign.
AIFF Media Team
CHENNAI: Right-back Shubhangi Singh has been one of the first names on the India U-17 and U-20 women's teams over the past few months. She played every single minute of India's FIFA U-17 Women's World Cup campaign in October last year and the SAFF U-20 Women's Championship in Bangladesh last month.
At just 16 years old, Shubhangi has gathered a lot of international experience already. She is blessed to have something not many girls do in our country - receive the support of her parents to pursue football. "My mother, father and brother have always supported both my education and football as well," she said.
Hailing from Gujarat, Shubhangi began playing football at the age of 12 with her brother. "I played with boys and began participating in local tournaments.
"I used to play in my school, where I received good support from my coach. I later joined an academy in Gujarat, where I've been practising for four years," said Shubhangi.
Without a doubt, Shubhangi's selection in the Indian camp brought elation to everyone in her family, as making the national team had always been her aim.
Shubhangi feels lucky to have trained under a highly-experienced coaching name in the women's football circuit like Thomas Dennerby. "We learned a lot by training under coach Thomas for eight months, going on exposure tours and participating in the World Cup. Our game changed a lot under his guidance. He's such an experienced coach," she stated.
Shubhangi herself underwent a change in her playing position on the pitch - from right wing to right back. The 16-year-old has also focused a lot on her dead ball abilities and has become the set piece specialist of the team.
The Young Tigresses may have returned empty-handed from the FIFA U-17 Women's World Cup, but it was in no way a tournament to forget for the girls. "We got the opportunity to play against some of the best teams in the world like USA, Brazil and Morocco, and took a lot of learnings from the tournament," said Shubhangi.
Now, as the India U-20s gear up for the AFC U-20 Women's Asian Cup Qualifiers Round 1 in Vietnam next week, making the cut among the continent's elite is the only aim. "Our team is highly motivated after the disappointment of the SAFF U-20 Women's Championship. All our focus now is on qualifying for the Asian Cup. But, of course, first, we need to reach the second round," said Shubhangi.
"Coach Thomas has full faith in us. He believes that we will qualify," she added.