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AIFF Youth Leagues set to launch in second week of December

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New Delhi: The All India Football Federation (AIFF) on Friday announced the launch of the AIFF Youth Leagues, with the U-17 version, scheduled to kick off in the second week of December.

In an effort to ensure fair play, the AIFF will conduct TW3 Tests for the U-13 and U-15 Youth Leagues, starting in January, as part of a comprehensive strategy to eradicate age fraud. Over 50 teams are expected to participate, with direct entry granted to teams from the Indian Super League (ISL), I-League, I-League 2, and Elite Academies with AIFF Academy Accreditation.

The first round of AIFF Academy Accreditation was completed, with 30 Academies from the Elite category awarded accreditation on the basis of various criteria fulfilled. The criteria included factors such as Residential Setup, Technical and Administration Staff, Medical and Education Provisions and other important requirements. The Advanced and Basic criteria accreditations will be completed subsequently.

To keep the National Accreditation true and fair to its objective – the AIFF plans to conduct surprise inspections for the accredited academies. Any discrepancies or non-compliance towards the criteria as per the accreditation policy may lead to the stripping of the academy’s accreditation, the AIFF sources said.

AIFF President Kalyan Chaubey said, “This year, the leagues have been slightly delayed. After three years, the Junior and Sub-Junior National Football Championships Tier 1 and 2 for boys and girls were organised.”

“Now, we are going to kickstart the national youth leagues, for which more than 30 academies have been accredited after checking all their parameters. Along with them, the I-League and the ISL junior teams will also be taking part. We will be starting with the U17 league first, followed by the U15 and U13. There will be spotters in most of the games of U13 leagues, to identify talents,” he said.

The AIFF Youth League aims to be inclusive, extending invitations to nominations from AIFF Member Associations that have successfully conducted Youth Leagues in their states. This collaborative approach seeks to create a dynamic and competitive platform for India’s emerging football talent, setting the stage for a vibrant future in Indian football.

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