The Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in Kochi became the first Indian venue to be officially confirmed as a host for the upcoming Under-17 FIFA World Cup, after a 23-member delegation from FIFA on Wednesday provided the green signal.
"Based on what we have seen and based on all the work we have done with the Government of Kerala, with the Kerala Football Association, with all the different stakeholders here in Kochi, we are extremely pleased to announce that Kochi has been ratified as a venue for FIFA U-17 World Cup. Congratulations!" announced the tournament director, Javier Ceppi at a press conference in Kochi, according to PTI.
Ceppi also added that though a few things still needed to be completed, there had been improvements in various areas.
"From sewage facilities to toilets, it's all been taken care of really well and that for me is very commendable," said Ceppi. "State government now needs to focus on finishing the work at the stadium and especially the training sites within very tight deadlines, but overall it is commendable how the venue has shaped up."
The other cities that are under consideration are Delhi, Navi Mumbai, Guwahati, Margao and Kolkata. The tournament is slated to be held from September to October next year.