Salt Lake Stadium ready to host U-17 World Cup final, says Joy Bhattacharjya

The tournament’s project director told Sportstar, “There is some painting work left which is not worrisome.”

The Salt Lake Stadium will host the U-17 World Cup final.   -  PTI

The Salt Lake Stadium in Kolkata is ready to host the U-17 FIFA World Cup final, according to the tournament’s project director Joy Bhattacharjya. He told Sportstar, “There is some painting work left which is not worrisome. But rest all, Kolkata as a city, as a venue is ready to host the final.”

Bhattacharjya was delighted with ticket sales in Kolkata, Guwahati, Kochi and Mumbai and was hopeful of a surge of ticket sales in Delhi and Goa after the draw on July 7. He disclosed that 50 percent of tickets available in Kolkata had been sold out.

Bhattacharjya was confident that the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in Kochi will be ready on time. He said all requirements had been met through chief minister Pinari Vijayan and the work would be completed on time. Bhattacharjya was impressed by the progress of work at the DY Patil Stadium in Mumbai, which he said was ready with additional Rs. 3-4 crores spent on the installation of bucket seats.

There will be a trophy tour across the participating countries and the official anthem of the tournament was being recorded, Bhattacharjya said.

About ‘Mission 11’, a football initiative aimed towards taking the game to 12,000 schools in 37 cities across the country, Bhattacharjya said, “The plan is to get school kids engaged in playing football, [and] also [to] incentivise schools and parents. This will be done in two ways: first way is to tell that it will not hurt the kids academically, second way is that the kids are told that it is not necessary to play in 11, you can also play in groups of two, three, four, five. They are given a simple manual in their local language. This helps a lot as it broadens the base of the game. The most interesting feature is that more and more girls are coming up to play.”

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