Futsal fever is gaining unstoppable momentum across Northeast as Assam Titans FC held its Guwahati trial rounds on August 7 and 8. The trials were conducted at Deshbhakta Tarun Ram Phookan Indoor Stadium with 27 teams battling for their spot in the team.
As this would be the first time that a mix-gender futsal league would be conducted in India, restricted to the Northeast, an all-girls team was also present for the trials on August 7. Also, registrations were kept free for the female players. This is the second trial that was conducted with the previous one taking place in Kokrajhar.
Kaushik Dutta, management head of Assam Titans FC, said that due to the floods, they weren’t able to conduct another trial session in the districts of upper Assam.
The Guwahati trials also saw the presence of over 15 solo players.
Also, this would be the first time that two foreign players will be present in every team, a foreign player (goalkeeper) from Nottingham University would also be a member of Assam Titans FC. Durga Boro, the striker for Ozone FC of the I-League 2nd Division, will also be present as the team mentor.
The players tried to put their best foot forward under the scrutinizing eyes of the scouts present there, as the scouts will see individual player’s footwork, dribbling skills and also the way they hold under intense pressure. These scouts will determine if the players are worth being a part of the state team.
The winners of the trial event were Dewdrops FC, Maligaon bagging a cash prize of Rs 7,000 with Teleria Sports Association, Tezpur as the first runner up bagging a cash prize of Rs 1,000.
The North East Futsal League is leaving no stones unturned as apart from Asia, players from Europe and Africa will be joining the competition.
For the first time, player profiles will also be introduced allowing the players to be transferred from one team to the next. Warren Noronha, marketing head of North East Futsal League (NEFL) said that NEFL won’t just be a one-month event as they will also be introducing NEFL School Leagues and NEFL State Leagues in the near future.
With the final event on August 25, the teams — Arunachal Highlanders, Assam Titans, Nagaland Super 5, Apunba Manipur, Mizo Falcons, and Meghalaya Thunders have entered the last lap of the competition.