Ahmedabad: All India Football Federation (AIFF) president Praful Patel on Friday hoped Gujarat would have a I-league and ISL team in the next couple of years.
An important reason for hosting a Mission XI Million festival in the city's The Arena by TransStadia on Saturday is to ensure football develops and grows in the state of Gujarat.
Local organising committee chairmain of the U-17 World Cup, Patel said, "While it might not be at the forefront at the moment, I will try my best to ensure that they grow in the coming years. We will start from the very base, from the kids.
"Through this MXIM programme, we want to establish a connect with the children here. We will follow this up with an elite academy soon and hopefully in the next couple of years, there will be a team in the I League, the ISL as well as the Indian Women's League from this state."
The ambitious project of the FIFA Under-17 Football World Cup, Mission XI Million, has reached the landmark of reaching out to 3132 schools across India.
With the enthusiasm shown by the kids and the historic participation of the schools, MIXIM is well on its way to reach out to 11 million boys and girls in all 29 states before the FIFA U-17 World Cup begins in October 2017.