World football body, FIFA on Wednesday named Bhubaneswar, Goa and Navi Mumbai as the host cities for the upcoming FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup to be held in October later this year. FIFA also announced that the draw for the marquee tournament will take place in Zurich on June 24.
Following the cancellation of the 2020 edition of the event due to the COVID-19 pandemic, FIFA, the All India Football Federation (AIFF) and the Local Organising Committee (LOC) confirmed the host cities after undertaking a comprehensive review and consultation process.
“In order to ensure the safety of the players involved and the other participants in the tournament, Bhubaneswar’s Kalinga Stadium, Goa’s Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium and Navi Mumbai’s DY Patil Stadium have been announced as the three venues that will welcome some of the brightest emerging talents and future stars of women’s football,” the LOC said in a media release.
Sarai Bareman, FIFA Chief Wome’s Football Officer, said: “Following the recent FIFA visit to India, this is an important step forward and marks the start of the final countdown towards the tournament.” Praful Patel, the LOC chairman, AIFF President and FIFA Council member, added: “Following FIFA’s recent successful visit to India, remaining cognisant of the evolving COVID-19 situation, the new footprint for the tournament was decided upon.
“While Goa and Navi Mumbai have already displayed considerable expertise in hosting international tournaments, Bhubaneswar, an upcoming sporting powerhouse, perfectly aligns with the values of growth and development of this youth tournament.” Apart from hosts India, six countries — Brazil, Chile, China PR, Colombia, Japan and New Zealand — have confirmed their participation so far and are sure to feature in the draw on June 24.
With 16 teams set to compete in the tournament, spots are still up for grabs. The tournament is set to be played from October 11 to 30.