GIFT 2013 to unveil state’s football policy


The Chief Minister, Mr Manohar Parrikar will unveil the state government’s Football Policy on the occasion of inaugurating the first Goa International Football Table (GIFT) 2013, which will be organised by Goa Football Development Council (GFDC) at the Goa Marriot here, on March 15 and 16.
There will be an array of speakers who will give their insights on vital topics such as Infrastructure-Goa; India’s New Football Infra Story; Talent Development-Goa; The Catalyst & Gateway To Indian Football Success; Community Development/Social Upliftment-Sports (football); The Simple Upliftment of Society; Marketing & Sponsorship- When Football Meets Moneyball; and The Professionals-Upgrading Our Competition To Export Stars.
On the opening day, the registration will begin at 3 pm and the sessions will commence at 4 pm. On the following day, sessions will be held in the morning followed by the closing ceremony.
GFDC chairman, Dr Rufino Monteiro who briefed the media here on Saturday said that GIFT will be a first of the kind venture in Goa and the “crowning glory of the evening on the opening day will be the unveiling of the government’s Football Policy, which will be the biggest gift to Goa.”
“Football Policy has been envisioned by our chief minister as it will be unveiled in presence of top delegates both from India and abroad at the GIFT 2013,” Dr Monteiro disclosed.
“The Table will be graced by some of the leading personalities in the field of football, business, marketing and merchandising who will share their views, expertise and provide us with a window to the world of football through which we can further shape the future of Goan and Indian football together,” Dr Monteiro stated.
GIFT will unleash the leading speakers in football, some of whom will be Goa’s own leading lights who have established their kinsmanship in Indian entrepreneurship and share a common love and vision — football and dreaming of India making it to the pinnacle of football, the World Cup.
AIFF academy instructor, Mr Scott O’Donell will also make a presentation on ‘Indian Football Development’.
Famous ex-footballers from India and abroad will be in attendance at this football summit. Lifetime Achievement awards will be given away as well as an award for the most promising U-20 Goan player.
Goa’s ABCD in football, late Rekha Karapurkar, a stalwart in Goa’s women’s football, India’s most successful club coach Armando Colaco and late Fr Adolf Viegas, who was a pillar of GFA’s administration along with referee Julio will be among those who will receive the lifetime achievement award. There will be 200 participants in attendance for  GIFT 2013.
Adding further, Dr Monteiro said that beach soccer continues to play a vital role in shaping the careers of some of the best players and teams in world football. Joan Cusco, Senior Vice-President of Beach Soccer WorldWide brings to the table what beach soccer means to world football and how big a role it plays in shaping a player in terms of skill, endurance, strength and discipline.
To a pointed query on how GIFT was conceptualised, Dr Monteiro put forth an elaborate reply. “The GFDC’s vision of taking Goan football to the international planet is gradually taking shape. With the state government taking the lead in giving the sport a major shot in the arm, by making football the state sport and the creation of GFDC, the Council in turn sowed the seeds with the kicking off of five football training centres, two in the outskirts in Valpoi and Sulcorna and three in the villages of Benaulim, Navelim and Aldona, of which only Navelim belongs exclusively to girls  while the other four are for both boys and girls.”
“Even as these centres take shape, in its efforts to further its dream of not just making Goa the numero uno state in football but being the state with the largest exporter of footballers, the GFDC has ventured into prominent area, which is of roping in the best brains in the country and abroad in the business of marketing, branding and merchandising in the hope of taking not just Goan but Indian football to the highest level. Making it business oriented from the present charity mode. Thus the conceptualisation of the GIFT 2013,” Dr Monteiro explained, adding: “GIFT 2013 is another facet that will propel Goan football to another planet. It is just the beginning, but our endeavour to achieve our dream and goals of putting Indian football on the Asian and World map is gradually unfolding.”
“We have just begun taking baby steps, but are confident of taking giant strides as time goes by. Of course, during the course of our endeavour, expect a few trial errors but please do not execute your judgement. We need you to take our hands, walk with us, support and guide us and help us grow. After all, it is in togetherness that we can get stronger and rise faster,” Dr Monteiro summed up.
Meanwhile, GFDC member secretary, Mr Elvis Gomes while commenting on GIFT said: “GIFT 2013 is an opportunity for us to be exposed to the best experts in various fields of the game and to showcase our state of Goa. We should strive to produce home-grown heroes and familiarise, especially, our youngsters to our very own football heroes of yesteryears. GIFT should and will be an annual feature. We, at GFDC, believe in working with all stake-holders of the game in achieving the aim of making Goa, the Mecca of Indian football.” [NT]