AIFF Youth Cup to kick-off in Goa on May 15

New Delhi: The All India Football Federation (AIFF) is organising a Youth Tournament in Goa, beginning on May 15, with participation of teams from various continents.

The tournament will see five nations — the US, South Korea, Tanzania, Malaysia and hosts India — match up against each other.

The tournament organisers are keen to provide exposure to the U-16 national squad who are preparing for the U-17 World Cup, to be hosted by India next year.

All five teams would be playing against each other with the top two making it to the final. All matches are to be played at the Tilak Maidan in Goa.

“The whole purpose of the AIFF Youth Cup is to get a sense of how the U-17 World Cup is shaping up. The AIFF has facilitated a number of exposure tours for them in the past few months and we will continue to do so,” AIFF general secretary Kushal Das said in a statement on Monday.

“The tournament will provide us further clarity of what we need to improve further,” he added.

Goa will also be the host of the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) U-16 finals which are to be held from September 15 to October 2. The draw for which will be held in Goa on May 26.

India, despite being the hosts, had qualified for the finals on merit by basis of their performance in the AFC U-16 qualifiers in Tabriz in September, 2015.

The four semi-finalists from the U-16 finals will gain a direct entry to the 2017 U-17 World Cup.

The fixtures for the AIFF Youth Cup are as follows:

May 15: Tanzania vs USA (4 p.m.)
India vs Malaysia (8 p.m.)

May 17: India vs Tanzania (4 p.m.)
Malaysia vs South Korea (8 p.m.)

May 19: South Korea vs Tanzania (4 p.m.)
USA vs India (8 p.m.)

May 21: USA vs South Korea (4 p.m.)
Tanzania vs Malaysia (8 p.m.)

May 23: Malaysia vs USA (4 p.m.)
South Korea vs India (8 p.m.)

May 25: Third Place play-off (4 p.m.)
May 25: Final (8 p.m.)