New Delhi: If the 'Steve McMahon Football Academy' has its way, English Premier League giants and one of the most widely followed club, Liverpool FC could soon visit India for a pre-season friendly.
Kids enrolled at the academy, whose chief coach and mentor is the former England and Liverpool player, had their first training session at the Genesis Global ground in Noida on Saturday.
After a brief session with the kids, former English footballer Paul Masefiel, who is McMahon's assistant at the academy, said, "If we are doing so much (in terms of promoting the sport) we hope to bring Liverpool to India in the near future."
Masefield said that the aim is to produce someone like Sachin Tendulkar in Indian football.
"We have to create role modes like Sachin Tendulkar and Bhaichung Bhutia who have played against better teams abroad to develop his game. He has been fantastic for Indian football."
"The talented ones will be taken to Liverpool where they can develop their skills."
Even though the academy is charging an exorbitant fee of Rs 45,000 annually, they said they will make provisions for the ones with extraordinary talents even if they struggle to pay the fees.
"This is not a finishing school. And compared to sending kids to other countries to obtain training, it is much cheaper," said Gurveer Singh, sports director at Genesis.
The academy will cater to kids from age-group of eight to 16 with the aim of targeting them at young age so that maximum time can be spent with the kids in developing them into players of the future, not just for the India's national team but also to enable them to have the opportunity to play at the highest level in Europe.
"It's an opportunity not just to nurture but educate them on nutrition, player management and teach life skills," Masefield said.