When I first arrived in India in 2008 there were so many things to take in; the amazing food for one, and the many spoken languages. I learned of people's love for cricket, how to drive in crazy traffic, and was so blessed by the friendliness of people and family life in this new nation. I started to hear about Bollywood, and loved the amazing geographical diversity and the list goes on. However, what also stood out to me and really surprised me was the love and passion for football amongst the youth in India. During my years in India, I have seen so many youngsters kick a ball on the street, in a park, at their school, on a field, and even inside their homes :) That's when I started dreaming big and believing Indian players will one day represent their nation at the World Cup.
Having coached many players myself from different parts of India that belief has only grown. The talent is here, it's all around us! I don't believe football talent is limited to a geographical area like Europe, South America, or Africa. There is great talent all across the world and there is great talent in India also. If Argentina can produce one Messi then I really believe there are at-least 25 players just as talented as Messi somewhere in India right now! What? You might think I am crazy but I am believing it :) Let's go find them.
Having traveled across the world I believe another thing is possible in India. If Manchester, England, which is a city with an estimated population over half a million, has two great clubs (United and City), and many many other teams in and around the city. Then I believe cities in India should and could produce more quality clubs. More clubs means more quality leagues, better player development, and a new football culture in India which hopefully will lead to qualifying for the World Cup one day.
So wherever you are in India, wherever you are playing, keep dreaming big and believing you can do this. Let's do it together.
Bo Renes, Head Coach BCFC