After Kochi and Navi Mumbai, Goa has also been confirmed as a venue for the 2017 FIFA U17 Football World Cup.
India will be the hosts of the mega tournament next year and a delegation from FIFA has come down to the country to assess the situation and infrastructure facilities. After ratifying the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in Kochi and the DY Patil Stadium in Navi Mumbai, the committee has now given the go-ahead to the famous Fatorda Stadium in Goa as well.
"We last inspected the venue in February and I am delighted to see the progress on all fronts over the last six months," project director of the Local Organising Committee Tracy Lu said.
Lu believes the fact that Goa successfully hosted the AFC U16 Championships a few weeks back also played a major role in the Fatorda Stadium being given the thumbs-up.
"The venue in fact has already been tested through the AFC U16 Championships and from what the reports suggest, they did a great job," Lu added. "That adds to Goa credence and thus the venue certainly deserves to be a venue for the India's first FIFA World Cup."
Tournament director Javier Ceppi concurred. "Goa hosted the AFC U-16 Championship, which helped it get into very high infrastructure compliance levels and gives us enough confidence to ratify it as a venue for the FIFA U-17 World Cup India 2017," he said. "Now it is the moment to start focusing on all operational aspects to ensure a flawless delivery of the event."
The practice/training venues -- Tilak Maidan Stadium, Bambolin Stadium, Cana Benaulim Ground and Utorda Ground – were also ratified.
The delegation will travel to New Delhi on Sunday to check out the facilities in the capital and deem if it is fit to host such a big event.
Six stadiums in all have been shortlisted for the FIFA U17 World Cup, and now with three given the green signal, only three more remain. After Delhi, the organisers will also visit Guwahati and Kolkata.