Chhetri, who was here to launch a countrywide talent hunt programme, said that India’s first step should be to achieve something major in Asia.
“World Cup is a distant thing. Right now our focus should be on doing something good in Asia. If we set high goals at the moment we are going to get frustrated. So we should first look to do something in our continent. As they say you should take small steps and not rush to the goal,” Chhetri said.
Chhetri and former Manchester United player Dwight Yorke launched the talent hunt programme at Under 16 level to be conducted by Bharti Airtel in association with Man United.
The ‘Airtel Rising Stars’ scouting programme will cover 16 cities across India and pick 12 talented footballers to attend a week-long training camp at Old Trafford, the home of Manchester United, in England.
Chhetri said the initiative will help groom the young footballers in the country.
“The first day when I stepped out to play in Europe (during trials at Celtic in Scotland) I had no clue what was happening. The kind of tackles and the kind of pace at which they play I was really clueless. These kids will get a chance to feel what exactly it takes to play at the top level,” he said.
“It is a great opportunity for the young kids. They are around 14-15 years and to get an opportunity to rub shoulders with some of the best … it is going to be a great learning curve for them,” Chhetri said.
“At my time we did not have that many opportunities and with guys like Dwight (Yorke) motivating the youngsters, it is definitely going to be a great experience,” he added.
No related posts.