Indian Football - Aston Villa confirm Academy plans and eye Indian Super League club concord

The Birmingham based club will open an academy in New Delhi and Tony Xia also has plans to enter into a strategic agreement with an ISL team...

In a first for British club Aston Villa, the club will open its first academy outside England, in India. The announcement was made at a press conference where senior members of two of the most important ministries in the Indian government  - Ministries of Sport and Education - were in attendance alongside the Villains' owner Dr. Tony Xia, on Monday, 26th July. 

Goal had earlier revealed the meetings between Xia and Prakash Javadekar, the Human Resource Development (HRD) minister, on the same topic.  

Besides the academy project, the Birmingham-based club have also successfully appointed as the advisor on football in the sports curriculum for Indian state schools. This includes the process of training coaches who will be based in the state schools. 

The objectives of these measures is to ensure the speedy and meticulous development of international calibre Indian talent which will aid the national team and also help India stake claim to hosting a World Cup. 

The Lions' academy, to be based in New Delhi, will have state-of-the-art amenities like  including a 3G pitch and offices, changing rooms, gym, classrooms and other relevant resources. Property for the establishment will be provided by the Delhi Municipal Council. Children aged five and above will be trained at the academy, much like the English academy. 

Besides movement in the Indian football development sector, Xia and Villa hope to enter into an entente with a club playing in the Indian Super League (ISL), India's most popular football competition and the world's fourth most attended domestic league. 

“Aston Villa Football Club, one of the most successful football clubs in the history of English football, plans to expand globally and India is one of the countries where Aston Villa not only wants to have an ISL club but also open football academies all over India,” elucidated Xia, at the press conference attended not just by himself and senior officials of Villa, but also Vijay Goel, Minister for Sports, and Javadekar. 

Villa and the requisite personnel in the government were said to have negotiated the aspects of their agreements for five days. 

The Claret and Blues' new chairman, who recently took over the club for a reported  £76 million, also leveraged his clubs' stellar support alongside India's upcoming hosting of the U17 World Cup, to deliver a strong message for the club's plans as he seeks talent from India to be nurtured at Bodymoor Heath academy and eventually make the Villains' first team.

"Aston Villa has one of the best football academies in the world and has fans all over the world and some of our famous fans include David Cameron, Prince William, Tom Hanks and, using our network, we also want to help promote the U17 FIFA World Cup being held in India next year and make it a big sports celebration in India," he concluded. 

Villa, founded in 1874, is one of England's biggest clubs, who play at the 42,660 seater Villa Park in Birmingham, the country's second largest city. They have won seven first division titles in England, alongside seven FA cups, and  five League Cups and one European Super Cup. 

They also beat German Champions Bayern Munich to capture the European Cup in 1982, today's equivalent of the UEFA Champions League. 

Villa, founded in 1874, is one of England's biggest clubs, who play at the 42,660 seater Villa Park in Birmingham, the country's second largest city. They have won seven first division titles in England, alongside seven FA cups, and  five League Cups and one European Super Cup. 

They also beat German Champions Bayern Munich to capture the European Cup in 1982, today's equivalent of the UEFA Champions League.