AIFF Media Team
NAVI MUMBAI: FIFA President Mr. Gianni Infantino was felicitated by the All India Football Federation, in the presence of AIFF President Mr. Kalyan Chaubey, Vice President Mr. NA Haris, Secretary General Dr. Shaji Prabhakaran, Treasurer Mr. Kipa Ajay, along with the the members of the AIFF Executive Committee, State Association representatives, and Technical Committee ahead of the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup final in Navi Mumbai on Sunday, October 30, 2022.
Mr. Infantino interacted with representatives from the State Associations, and complimented India for being gracious hosts of the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup.
“India has been a fantastic host. This makes me believe that you can do more in other competitions as well. In the mean time, there can be only one World Champion, but there are 210 countries that art not champions. However, I always say that all 211 countries win in the end. Football brings smiles to every little girl and boy in the world. When children play or watch football, they smile,” said the FIFA President.
Mr. Infantino informed the gathering that he will be back in India early next year.
“We were just in meeting with Mr. Chaubey. Grassroots is an important area that we need to start pushing from, and build from there. There’s also things like how we can professionalise women’s competitions, and we have to strengthen the leagues to promote Indian Football,” said the FIFA President.
He also spoke about FIFA’s operations in India. He said, “You can count on FIFA to beef up our office here in India. We will work together on various things. India is a big country, a great country. There’s a lot to offer for both Indians in India and worldwide. I believe in the potential India has.”
The FIFA President said that India is one of the countries that FIFA has high on it’s list for the popularisation of football.
“I spoke about India in the FIFA Congress as the sleeping giants of football. Now, it’s time for India to wake up. Whenever I come to India, I see a lot of passion for sports. Our ultimate objective is to make football global, and India, along with USA and China are the three countries that are priority for us. To globalise football, we need to make India one of the top countries in the world.”