It has also been learnt that coach Luis Norton de Matos will be handed a contract extension as the Indian FA wants to continue the development of these boys for at least two more years.
“I think it is the best we can do for these boys in the future. For me, it's a key moment for football in India to let them play in a competition because they need to progress,” Norton told Goal.
There were a few concerns raised such as whether the India Under-17 players would be able to cope with the physicality of the foreigners in the I-League.
“The question of physical challenge for me is not a problem. As I told you, if you have a good organization and if you can keep the ball with a collective action, our team will be difficult to play against. Of course, success is a consequence of better organization,” he explained.
The former Benfica ‘B’ coach highlighted that after 18 matches in the I-League, this group of Under-17 players would be even more experienced which is vital for their growth and development.
“It's important to have 18 games or so because fans are already following this team thanks to the World Cup. After these 18 games they will be much stronger. Another important thing is that, after the World Cup if you want to keep the attention of 10 or 11 million people watching these players, it will be through this team. The brand of football in India now is this team,” he mentioned.