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English Premier League to train Indian coaches

The English Premier League (EPL) along with All India Football Federation (AIFF) and Sports Authority of India (SAI) will commence a three-year programme for training of 80 coaches in New Delhi and Kolkata next year.

A two-member EPL team, comprising Kate Hodgkinson (Media Operations Coordinator and Project Manager for Premier Skills) and Warren Barton (head coach of EPL, former Newcastle and England international), who visited Kolkata this week, said Thursday they were happy with the infrastructure and facilities provided by the AIFF, SAI and Indian Football Association (IFA) for the programme scheduled to start in February 2008.

Giving details of the programme, Barton said here: ‘We just completed the programme in Egypt and it was a huge success. The plan is to select 40 coaches from each of the two regions (Kolkata and Delhi) and train them in three phases so that they can go back to their respective areas and help to promote the sport.’

‘In the first part of the premier skills programme, the young coaches will be given a chance to develop their skills through world class professional coaches. The training would be a mix of classroom teachings on physical, psychological and nutritional details along with on field training on leadership, skills and communication,’ he added.

‘The training will be unfolded in phases over the next three years,’ he said.

The coaches who will impart training include Barton, Robbie Earl, an ex-Wimbledon coach and three other coaches from any of the 20 EPL clubs.

Kate, said, ‘We are happy with the facility and we hope the programme will be a huge success. After Egypt and India, the EPL will go to China.’

While the Delhi series kick-starts from Feb 4, Kolkata’s five-day session begins from March 10 next year.

The IFA and SAI would select 40 coaches from West Bengal and north-eastern states for the premier skills, while in New Delhi it will be done by AIFF and SAI. British Council will be an active member in both the courses.

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