By our Sports Reporter
GUWAHATI, Feb 24: Giving thumbs up to the organizer Bruno Coutinho , the former captain of Indian soccer team, said that the Dr T AO U-21 NEC Gold cup Soccer competition should be an annual event. The former star feels the tourment can serve as a catalyst to improve the standard of soccer in the grass root level.
The Arju awardee footballer was in the city yesterday to attend the iugural function of the Dr T AO U-21 NEC Gold cup Soccer competition. Coutinho attended the function as a Chief Guest.
Talking to The Sentinel at the side line of the iugural function Coutinho said, “North East has good potential in soccer. During our days small number of players from this region was seen in the big clubs or in the tiol team. But the scerio is now changed. In the recent U-17 World Cup, which India hosted, there were eight players from Manipur in the Indian team. The region can produce more and more players in intertiol level but for that providing quality training to the players is not enough. They need match practice too and so I feel this tourment should be an annual event.”
Guwahati is not a new city for Coutinho. Earlier he visited the city to play in the Bordoloi Trophy along with Santosh trophy soccer Championship. Sharing his views on the Indian football the former striker said, “Instantly we can’t become a top side in the world and for that we need proper planning. I think we first target to become a formidable outfit in Asia and try to give a good fight to the countries like Japan, South Korea and the Arab countries. Once we attain the target we can focus to improve further in World level.”
He also feels running two leagues, ISL and I League, parallel is not a right decision. “I feel there should be only one tiol league in the country with 18-20 teams”, said Coutinho.