Nine graduates from first RFYC batch to sign contracts with ISL clubs

These players have spent the last five years at RFYC as the first batch of students to be inducted when the academy was founded in 2015.

G. Balaji has signed a two-year contract with Chennaiyin FC.

Nine players, who are set to graduate as the first batch from the Reliance Foundation Young Champs (RFYC) academy in Navi Mumbai, will sign contracts with leading ISL clubs.

Aritra Das, Muhammed Basith PT & Birendra Singh are headed to Kerala Blasters FC, G Balaji & Aqib Nawab will be at Chennaiyin FC, Muhammed Nemil at FC Goa, Thoi Singh at Bengaluru FC, Ayush Chhikara at Mumbai City FC and Koustav Dutta at Hyderabad FC, it was announced on Wednesday.

Balaji and Nawab’s deals are for two years while the other seven players have agreed to three-year contracts.

“It is a matter of great pride and joy for us that our young champs from RFYC have embarked on their professional footballing journey with ISL.” said Nita Ambani, Founder & Chairperson of Reliance Foundation. “We started the academy in 2015 to provide a pathway for talented young players across India to build successful professional careers in the sport. These boys arrived at RFYC in their early teens and I am delighted that they step out today as highly skilled players, who have earned a place with the best football clubs in the country.”

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These players have spent the last five years at RFYC as the first batch of students to be inducted when the academy was founded in 2015.

Earlier this year RFYC was conferred Two-Star Academy status by the Asian Football Confederation (AFC), the first occasion a residential academy based in India was granted this status.

With 22 new young players joining the programme in the last year, the total students currently training at the RFYC academy is 65, with 22 full-time staff. RFYC also supports AIFF’s coach education efforts, to help strengthen India’s wider sports knowledge eco-system. 

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