Liverpool coaches train kids in Delhi

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src='' class='caption'> Coaches from Liverpool are in India on a mission to train school children in football.

Updated: March 22, 2007 06:37 IST
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New Delhi:

Coaches from Liverpool are in India on a mission to train school children in football. The children who attended the 12-day training camp in Delhi had never expected to get the opportunity to show off their footballing prowess to coaches from Liverpool. For that matter, the coaches had never expected to find so many soccer-loving kids in a cricket crazy country. "I'm a fan of cricket myself, I love it. You know when we drive from place to place, we see kids playing cricket on the streets. We would just love to see more kids play footy. I mean you just need a ball, that's it," said Steve Park, Junior Coach, Liverpool Football Club. The coaches were brought to India by an organisation called Sporting Football, and in the time they've spent in India, they've already interacted with a variety of football players, including children from underprivileged backgrounds. Focus on the basics Former Liverpool Captain Phil Neal kicked off the 12-day camp in Delhi, which was held for schoolkids between 8 to 14 years of age and focused mainly on the basics. "They love it - absolutely love it. They have smiles on their faces. We just want the kids to enjoy it. We're not looking at making the best footballers in the world. We're looking at them having a really good time playing football," said Mark Bygroves, Junior Coach, Liverpool Football Club. Maybe India still can't provide its footballers with good enough infrastructure that will help the players turn pro, but such a camp will certainly encourage the children to continue playing the game - as will the certificates they get from Liverpool FC for having participated. "They're basics, but they have made us do it in a very enjoyable way. So now that we've learnt different ways to do them, we'll do them more and enjoy them more," said one of the children. "We work on stuff like alertness and speed and it's good as you generally don't get to learn stuff like this," said another. So while Liverpool may not be everyone's favourite team, the kids have relished the opportunity to train with the foreign coaches and have decided to give their cricket kits a rest and polish their soccer skills as much as possible.

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