Former Ghana captain Asamoah Gyan, says as part of efforts to grow football in India, the All India Football Federation should open up their doors and give opportunities to foreign players interested in playing for the national team.
According to him, this will make the Indian national team very strong as well as go a long way to develop the game and catch up with other football powerhouses in the world.
Indian is noted for cricket and over the years the Football Federation is targeting on growing the sport in the country.
As part of efforts to bridge the gap and whip up interest in the game, the country hosted the FIFA U-17 World Cup in 2017 and it plans to host the FIFA World Cup in 2034.
Asamoah Gyan, a marquee signing for Indian Super League side North East United in an interview has advocated for Indian origin foreign players to be allowed to play for the team as done in countries like France, Belgium, Germany, and England which are power houses in world football.
“Of course, this should be allowed. Especially countries like France have done it. The players from different nationalities if they come together and play will make the team very strong”.
“Even there are some foreign players who have been here and who don’t play for them can also help if given an opportunity. They can make the national team very strong”, he added.
He also urged the Indian people to focus more on football despite cricket being the number one sport of the country.
“I urge people to focus more on football. Then the players will get more exposure, and they will grow in confidence to prove themselves. Because, sometimes, they think that they don’t get the exposure.”
Asamoah Gyan has already hit the ground running, with his first goal for the club against the India national team in a friendly game.
Gyan who is hoping to be fit before the season starts says, “I have just joined the team ten days ago from holiday. Since then, I have been training. To be honest, I am not yet 100 percent fit”.
“I need to improve my fitness level to make sure that I am ready for the first game of the season. I need to work really hard”.
By Herbert Boakye Yiadom