Morientes enthralls audience with four goals in Legends match

FIFA Legends – Carlos Valderrama, Fernando Morientes, Marcel Desailly, Jorge Campos and Emmanuel Amuneke – defeated the Indian contingent comprising the likes of Bembem Devi and Ngangom Bala Devi 5-4 in a promotional event for the FIFA U-17 World Cup.

Carlos Valderrama, Fernando Morientes, Marcel Desailly, Jorge Campos and Emmanuel Amuneke took part in an exhibition game at Dr DY Patil Stadium on Wednesday.   -  Special Arrangement

Five FIFA Legends – Carlos Valderrama, Fernando Morientes, Marcel Desailly, Jorge Campos and Emmanuel Amuneke – took part in an exhibition game at Dr DY Patil Stadium and unveiled the Winner's Trophy for the Navi Mumbai leg of the Trophy Experience. 

It was an unforgettable day for Indian football as the FIFA Legends took on an Indian contingent comprising Arjuna awardee Oinam Bembem Devi, Indian women's national team captain Ngangom Bala Devi; two kids from Mission XI Million, Minister of State for Heavy Industries and Public Enterprise Babul Supriyo and Bollywood filmmaker Shoojit Sircar.

Football fans in Mumbai watched the game enthusiastically from the stands and cheered for both teams in a match that ended 5-4 in favour of the FIFA Legends. Fernando Morientes scored four goals while Bala Devi was the standout performer for the Indian icons, scoring 2 goals and assisting another. 

Emmanuel Amuneke, winner of the FIFA U-17 World Cup with Nigeria as coach, said, ”I think dealing with U-17 players, the most important thing is to try to make sure they see you as someone who can add to their game. Try as much to guide them and not forget that there are a lot of distractions going on in their mind. But the most important thing is to bring them to a level where they can compete with teams all over the world”.

Fernando Morientes said, “Infrastructure and coaching can help create an ecosystem that can be conducive to the transition between youth teams and senior teams. That’s what Spain and France have been doing all these years. The infrastructure to start from the school level, right to the top”.

Marcel Desailly later remarked, 'This is a huge opportunity for the Indians kids to develop the game and hopefully see the national team taking international stage at the youth level”.

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