Spain’s top division football league, LaLiga has launched a comprehensive grassroots football development programme in India, LaLiga Football Schools, in partnership with India On Track (IOT). The historic move aims at developing the beautiful game at grassroots level in India, as the game is growing rapidly in the country. The LaLiga Football Schools are going to be set up pan-India, including major centres like Delhi, Mumbai, Pune, Bengaluru and Cochin, among others.
The rigorous training programme at LaLiga Football Schools will be delivered using LaLiga’s technical curriculum and detailed methodology and will be overseen by the programme technical director appointed by LaLiga for India. It will be a holistic, comprehensive football development programme, with a focus on students within the age range of 6 to 18 years.
India has shown its love and passion for the game repeatedly in the last few years, with Indian players giving standout performances at local, national and international platforms and the audiences watching and supporting the game expanding at an astounding rate. With India being one of the priority markets for LaLiga, this initiative is part of the several that have been undertaken to bring LaLiga closer to the passionate fan base here and inspire a change in the football environment.
This announcement comes just days after LaLiga announced a three-year broadcast partnership with Facebook for the Indian subcontinent. The social media giant will show all 380 matches live and free, it will mean over 270 million people in India will have access to watch LaLiga each and every week. Select LaLiga matches will also be telecast on the sports channels of one of the India’s largest broadcasters, Sony Pictures Networks India giving the Indian football fan the most comprehensive viewing experience.
Jose Cachaza, Head of LaLiga India said, “LaLiga is a strong propagator of developing young football talent. Seeing the kind of talent and passion Indians have for the beautiful game, we decided to collaborate with IOT and create a base to nurture the talent here. We are excited to see young boys and girls from India train with our best coaches and facilities and learn to play the LaLiga way.
This move is a further sign of our commitment to India and follows off the back of our ground-breaking agreement with Facebook, which will see all 380 games shown live, and for free on the platform. We want to inspire the next generation of Indian football“
Vivek Sethia, Founder, India On Track (IOT) said, “The future of any sport lies in the development of its grassroots. India On Track has always partnered with top sporting entities to provide the talented youth of India with the best possible training opportunities. Our partnership with LaLiga bears testament to that and LaLiga Football Schools is a continuation in that direction.”
Founded in 1984, LaLiga (Liga de Fútbol Profesional) is a sports association comprising the 42 teams that make up the first and second divisions of professional football in Spain. LaLiga, based in Madrid, is responsible for the LaLiga Santander and LaLiga 123 leagues and the television production, which in the 2016/2017 season reached more than 2.5 billion people globally. The association also has an active foundation and is the world’s first professional football league with a league for intellectually challenged footballers: LaLiga Genuine.