Indian Football’s Vision 2047 | 11 Jan 2023

Prelims: All India Football Federation, FIFA.

Mains: Indian football’s Vision 2047.

Why in News?

The All India Football Federation unveiled its strategic roadmap with ‘Vision 2047’, hoping that in the country’s centenary year of independence, India will emerge as a new powerhouse of Asian football.

  • Developed in conjunction with all stakeholders within Indian Football, the roadmap has also sought and incorporated inputs from the Asian Football Confederation and FIFA (Fédération internationale de Football Association).
  • AIFF has broken down ‘Vision 2047’ into six four-year strategic plans. The first of these will look to cover the period till 2026.

What is Indian Football’s Vision 2047?

  • National Football Philosophy:
    • The national football philosophy of India would be based on collecting data from scouting, creating a technical curriculum, focusing on coach and player development and hoping it would translate into a talent pool for the national team.
      • To create a national playing philosophy, the AIFF will develop the Coach Education Program to improve the quality of football at all levels of the ecosystem.
      • The AIFF has also targeted creating 50,000 active coaches — almost 4,500 with a minimum AIFF C License — across the country.
    • The focus on collecting data and creating a scouting system will be in charge of and will do so by 2026. The overall approach to finding a footballing philosophy though remains the same.
  • Vibrant Footballing Ecosystem.
    • The roadmap envisions India to be among the top four footballing nations in Asia, host one of the top leagues in Asia, and create a vibrant footballing ecosystem.
  • Village Grassroots Programmes:
    • AIFF aims to implement village grassroots programmes to reach 35 million children across 100 villages throughout India and also aim to register 1 million registered players and provide football education to 25 million children through Football for Schools.
    • They noted that there is a huge gender disparity in participation at grassroots level.
  • Enhancement of Women Participation:
    • A four-level league table pyramid will be created for women’s football by 2026 with the top of the pyramid to be occupied by the Indian Women’s League (featuring 10 teams), followed by the 2nd Division (8 teams). AIFF has also targeted a minimum of 20 states to implement the new women’s youth structures by 2027.
      • The women’s football ecosystem has been weak in the country and needed specific solutions to help increase participation and competency, also mentioning the need to improve the minimum salary.
  • Infrastructure:
    • The AIFF will improve infrastructure by putting in place policy interventions that will incentivise government authorities, football clubs, corporates, and private investors to invest in infrastructure.

What is the Scenario of Football in India?

  • About:
    • Football in India is currently at a developing stage. Despite being the second most populous country in the world, football is not as popular in India as cricket.
  • Challenges:
    • One of the main challenges facing football in India is the lack of investment and infrastructure. Many stadiums and training facilities are in poor condition, and there is a shortage of properly trained coaches and trainers. This makes it difficult for players to develop their skills and for teams to compete at a high level.
  • Potential:
    • The Indian national team has made some strides and has improved its FIFA ranking. The ISL and I-League have also seen an increase in popularity and attendances, and there have been some successful Indian players in overseas leagues.
    • Overall, football in India still has a long way to go, but there are some positive developments and there is potential for growth in the future.
    • The recent efforts of AIFF to improve grassroots level football, training and development of coaches, referees, infrastructure and promoting the game to newer areas and schools, will help in bringing more people to the game and increase its popularity and success.

What is AIFF?

  • The AIFF is the organization that manages the game of association football in India.
  • It administers the running of the India national football team and also controls the I-League, India's premier domestic club competition, in addition to various other competitions and teams.
  • The AIFF was founded in 1937, and gained FIFA affiliation in the year 1948, after India's independence in 1947.
  • Currently, it has an office in Dwarka, New Delhi. India was one of the founding members of the Asian Football Confederation in 1954.

Source: HT