Spanish football league La Liga signed an agreement with the West Bengal government to set up an academy in the state for nurturing young talents, an official said on Friday.
The MoU was signed during a closed-door meeting between Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee and La Liga president Javier Tebas in Madrid, he said.
Banerjee, who is on a 12-day trip to Spain, met Tebas in Madrid on Thursday evening and held a closed-door meeting, which focussed on strengthening relations through linking sports and cultural institutions.
"This remarkable MoU intends to promote football to foster sportsmanship, health, and prosperity. La Liga will develop a football training academy in West Bengal," the official said.
According to the agreement, coaches and players from the state will be trained by the coaches of La Liga.
They will also share their experience and expertise to assist the football clubs of West Bengal and make them self-sustainable, the official said.
Banerjee was accompanied by former BCCI president Sourav Ganguly and senior officials of Kolkata football giants Mohun Bagan, East Bengal and Mohammedan Sporting Club.
Banerjee invited Tebas to West Bengal, and requested him to be present during a friendly match.
"Be our guest, feel the football mania in Bengal. The kind of football frenzy you witness in Bengal is unparalleled," she told the La Liga president. In reply, he said, "I have no doubt that Bengal is the talent factory of football, and has produced some of India's finest players." Ganguly, the cricket icon, said the academy would be a positive step for developing talents in the state.
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