Bengaluru to be part of Premier Futsal

Bengaluru has been confirmed as one of the venues for this year's Premier Futsal.

The inaugural Premier Futsal, launched by Luis Figo, was held in Chennai and Goa.   -  Vivek Bendre

After testing the waters at two venues – Chennai and Goa – in 2016, Premier Futsal is set to expand with Bengaluru being confirmed as one of the venues for this year's edition.

At the launch of a talent scouting program here on Thursday, Dinesh Raj, Managing Director, Premier Futsal, said that the expansion plans will progress unhindered in spite of the All India Football Federation's (AIFF) refusal to sanction the league.

“That’s something that will keep happening and we are not bothered about it,” Dinesh Raj said. “We are trying to do something good for the game by providing many talented players a platform. The Union Sports minister [Vijay Goel] has backed our venture.”

“We have the complete backing of the Karnataka sports minister Pramod Madhwaraj for the matches here. Various State governments have backed us. And we being a private entity, I don’t see a reason why AIFF has to interfere in our work.”

Dinesh Raj also confirmed that legends like Ryan Giggs, Luis Figo and Paul Scholes, who were the poster boys of the competition last year, would return.

“Most of those who played last year have assured their participation,” he said. “Giggs, Scholes, Falcao (Alessandro Vieira) will be here, while the franchises are looking at a few other guys too.”

The trials here will be held in the second week of June at the Koramangala Indoor Stadium with the Bengaluru leg of the tournament tentatively scheduled for the July-August.