AIFF Media Team
NEW DELHI: With just about 200 days left for India to host its first FIFA event, anticipation is rising, and football aficionados are eagerly waiting to host teams brimming with potential.
The qualifiers are still on, and there is already plenty to get excited about. Among the madness of matches, here’s a comprehensive guide of who all have made it to India so far, for the tournament scheduled for October 2017.
New Caledonia – The Melanesian nation made history by qualifying for the tournament. Just like the host country, it will also be New Caledonia’s first World Cup appearance. It comes just 13 years after they became a FIFA Member Nation. With a population of just 262,00, the side’s performance in the OFC qualifiers is worthy of further awe.
New Zealand – If New Caledonia’s performance in the qualifiers was surprising, New Zealand winning the OFC crown was equally expected. The Kiwis won their seventh consecutive crown and ensured that even though they made it for the FIFA U-17 World Cup after some resounding wins. Charles Spragg will certainly be a player to watch out for with the youngster scoring a whopping seven goals over the course of the tournament.
Paraguay – The South American team sealed their passage to the competition after a 3-1 win over Venezuela. Their delight at making to the youth World Cup was documented on the nation’s official Twitter handle. Seeing the young boys celebrate their victory, and qualification melted many hearts on social media!
Chile – The last FIFA U-17 World Cup was hosted by Chile and seeing that the South American nation also hosted the CONMEBOL U-17 Championship, it would have been highly disappointing to see La Roja miss out on making it to this edition of the FIFA U-17 World Cup. Thankfully, a narrow, but disciplined 1-0 win over Ecuador courtesy Gaston Zuniga’s strike, ensured we see the talented South American teenagers in India.
Brazil – Much of the Brazil senior national team’s performances and accomplishments have been attributed to the youngsters they regularly produce. The world has seen the rise of Ronaldinho – who remains the only player to win the FIFA U-17 World Cup and the senior FIFA World Cup – Neymar, Marcelo, Philippe Coutinho, Marquinhos among others. India will now have the chance to see other talented Brazilians make waves and take the limelight at India in October when the FIFA U-17 World Cup comes home!
Colombia – Colombia got the final ticket to the FIFA U-17 World Cup India 2017 after they defeated 2-1 in the South American U17 Football Championship. The Colombians will be participating in the youth world championship after eight years, having missed on qualification in the previous three editions of the tournament. Their best finish in the tournament has been 4th place.
Posted on : Monday March 20, 2017