New Delhi, Jan 20 (IANS) The Indian U-17 football team will play two exhibition matches against a combined Indian Football Association (IFA) XI and NorthEast XI on January 25 and 29, in Kolkata and Guwahati, respectively.

The matches will be played as part of implementing a scouting system aimed at searching for footballing talent, the All India Football Federation (AIFF) said in a statement on Wednesday. The matches will incorporate added value to the ongoing second phase of scouting, which is being conducted by AIFF in association with the state associations. The U-17 team is coached by German Nicolai Adam. 

“The aim of these matches is to build a foolproof scouting system and if any player catches our eye, we will immediately send him for medical tests and rope him into the Indian U-17 World Cup squad,” Abhishek Yadav, AIFF’s director of scouting, said. “As part of the second phase of scouting, these matches will also help us get a better look at players from all over India.” “We appreciate the efforts of the state associations and their contribution to the Indian U-17 World Cup squad”, Yadav added. The Indian U-17 World Cup squad beat Maharashtra XI 8-0 in an exhibition match on December 21 last year.

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    The IANS was founded by Indian American publisher Gopal Raju as the India Abroad News Service. It was later renamed the Indo-Asian News Service.

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