Mumbai, Feb 12, 2024: The Reliance Foundation Development League (RFDL) is set to kick off its third season on February 14 with the first match in Mizoram — the youth football extravaganza, which has become a breeding ground for emerging talent and offers a crucial platform for players to shine and catch the eyes of top-tier clubs.
n the RFDL 2024, more than 55 teams will be participating across eight zones — Mumbai, Goa, Kerala, South, North, East, Meghalaya – Assam, and Mizoram. The participants include clubs from ISL, I-League, I-League 2nd Division, and State Football Associations.
The League will be divided into three phases: Regional Qualifiers, National Group Stage, and National Championship and will involve more than 300 matches. The National Championship will have 20 sides from pan India progressing to the National Group Stage across 40 games with the winners from each group booking their spot for National Championship.
The National Championship involves two semifinals, a third-place playoff, and the summit clash.
“The RFDL helps us keep a close watch on prospects, especially from the reserve teams of all the clubs, and it eases their transition to the first team. It allows us to scout talent from a widespread pool of players from clubs across the country. Young talents get a chance to be nurtured by coaches through the competition, and it not only helps us reinforce our squads at the senior level but also enables the creation of a sustainable footballing ecosystem in India,” said Carles Cuadrat, Head Coach, East Bengal FC.
India international and FC Goa defender Sandesh Jhingan said the event allows talented players to showcase their potential.
“RFDL gives a fantastic opportunity to players to seize more playing time and display their skills in competitive matches. Young talents have shined in the competition lately and the enhancements of opportunities play a part in the overall development and competitiveness of Indian football. By showcasing their potential in a tournament like this, young aspiring footballers across the country are inspired and encouraged to follow their dreams with similar passion and dedication,” said Jhingan.