A football league for children under 12 years of age called the Young Legend’s League was kicked off yesterday, November 11 at Chhangphut Field, Champhai in Mizoram.
The YLL is a ‘baby league’ organised jointly by 8One Foundation, New Delhi and the Mizoram Football Association. The league will provide competitive matches for Under-12, Under-10 and Under-8 teams for around 7 months, with matches played on Saturdays and during school holidays.
Each match will be played under five-a-side rules with each age group comprising of 12 teams. The 12 teams will each have 7 players. Each age group competition will be played in a league format that will see two teams face each other three times during the season. Each team will play a total of 33 games in a season, coming to a total of 594 matches in a season.
Prakhar Soni, 8One Foundation personnel who has been in Champhai overseeing the start of the YLL said, “We are very satisfied with our start here. The kids are having fun and the most important thing is that they get to enjoy football in the right way. We will go on to fix certain areas which may need adjustments or improvements in the future, and we will make sure we have a successful YLL. This league will surely bear fruits in Indian football in the future.”
Varun Achreja, Founder, 8one Foundation also said, “We are giving our maximum effort to make sure that the YLL is a success, and we are very happy with out progress right now. We will work together with the community in the YLL, and we are delighted of our partnership with the MFA and the Champhai District Football Association.”
MFA honorary secretary Lalnghinglova Hmar also spoke of the league, “The much awaited YLL has now begun. 8One Foundation have provided all the necessary funds for the league, providing children with complete kits as well as footballs.” He also acknowledged the Champhai DFA for the implementation of the YLL and for their continuing efforts making sure of it is a success.
The intent of the YLL is to make sure children enjoy as much playing time as possible in competitive football. A man of the match award will be given out at each match, and there will also be prizes at the end of the season.
Young prospects from the YLL will also be provided avenues to get into top football academies in the country.