The German Football Association’s (DFB) German Student National Football Team began its India tour with an Orientation Camp with chosen players from Stairs School Football League Delhi (SSFL) 2015.
Composed of professional and highly talented footballers who mainly play in the German 4th division , The DFB’s German Student National Football Team participated in a skills, knowledge and experience sharing workshop with SSFL footballers and SSFL coaches.
The Camp was organized on 4 January 2016 at Dr BR Ambedkar Stadium by STAIRS, a non-profit organization that focuses on youth development through sports. STAIRS is credited for establishing SSFL as the world’s largest football talent spotting and training programme, an initiative that has caught attention of the entire sports fraternity for being a promising platform for talented footballers at the grassroots.
Markus Weidner, the German Football Associations (DFB), Director for Coaching and International Relations, said, “We are looking forward to a great start into the new year beginning with a unique engagement with SSFL players and coaches. I have learnt that SSFL is one of the largest and the most promising talent spotting and training platforms in the country and interacting with Team Stairs and engagement with SSFL players and coached was a great learning experience for us as well as DCB’s team.”
The camp was spearheaded by legendary Football coach Tarun Roy, who made SSFL footballers familiar with various professional tactics including nitty-gritty of fast-pace game and special dribbling, turning, shooting and square passing techniques. Roy who once played for India has over 20 years of experience in coaching, has been a selector of Indian Team and is also a head coach of Indian Senior Women’s Team.
“I believe right mentoring and professional coaching at adolescent age can help in nurturing the talent that can potentially bring laurels to the country. I am really happy to be associated with STAIRS as they are doing incredible work for the development of football at the grassroots. The platform that SSFL has given to the children is the much needed at this time. While it is an opportunity for youngster to showcase their talent, which was not easily available in our times, it also promises to give India its future team,” said Taurn Roy.
Siddhartha Upadhyay, Founder and Secretary General, STAIRS Foundation, said, “I am grateful to German Missions in India and DFB for recognizing our work and getting German Student National Football Team to engage with SSFL Delhi players. Germany has a great footballing culture and is the World Champion of football. An engagement with professionals from their country was a great experience for the budding players of India. Our ultimate aim is to match the footballing culture as well as the skill and talent levels of countries like Germany and such engagements and goodwill gestures shall give a substantial boost to our efforts. We shall continue to conduct such camps in the future.
“I am also thankful to Tarun Roy for being so humble and believing in STAIRS’ initiative. The legendary coach brings with him the years of experience and international exposure. Under his mentorship and coaching I am sure we will be able to find and nurture the best footballers that the country needs at this time.
“With an aim to ensure that the scientific approach is added to physical fitness element at the grassroots sports, we have associated with Grow Fit Strong. The experts from the organization ensured that the budding footballers are aware about prevention of serious injuries and ways to maintain the highest levels of fitness for best performance.”
At the camp Grow Fit Strong conducted a science workshop wherein the team of experts did an ‘agility test’ and ‘body composition analysis of SSFL footballers and also had a session with them on sports injuries and ways to prevent them.
After their interaction with SSFL players in Delhi, the German Students national team will visit Aizawl, Kolkata and Bengaluru where they will be playing friendly matches against Mizoram XI in Aizawl and against Ozone FC in Bengaluru.
The tour to India is supported by the German Ministry of Foreign Affairs and is being organized by the German Football Association (DFB) with support and clearance of All India Football Federation, who are the custodians of football in India.