Last year when Fatma Samba Diouf Samoura of Senegal was appointed Secretary General of FIFA, it was hailed as a groundbreaking move in a largely male-dominated sport. Now the All India Football Federation will host the U-17 FIFA World Cup in October 2017.
In a bid to fight gender inequality, FIFA has announced that it will aid women's I-League in India. Marion Mayer-Vorfelder, FIFA’s head of events told Press Trust of India, "Over the past few years FIFA has put in a lot of efforts into developing women’s football (soccer) and promoting gender equality. Our aim is to break down the gender barriers in soccer.”
One of the issues plaguing women's soccer teams in India is the lack of funding as they are way behind their male counterparts. The crowd turnout is also significantly lower for women's sports.
The influential sports body is lending a helping hand towards the growth of the women’s sport in India. In January, the All India Football (Soccer) Federation launched the first-ever Indian Women's League to be housed at the Ambedkar Stadium in New Delhi.
"They (AIFF) have been implementing FIFA's 'Live Your Goals' campaign for three years now and have reached out to thousands of female players." Samoura told the Press Trust of India.
“FIFA and the AIFF have also worked on capacity building to improve the level of the game, by organizing coaching — courses for coaches in women’s soccer. In addition, the recently-launched women’s league will be partially financed by FIFA forward funding over the next three years,” said Mayer-Vorfelder.