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Amidst disarray, U-17 World Cup a ray of hope for women's football in India

When India won the right to host the 2020 U-17 Women's World Cup on Friday, this writer's thoughts immediately went to two young women he has read about or known.

The first, Nathania John, is someone ESPN's Sharda Ugra recently wrote about. The other was a precocious 12-year-old that was playing in a Delhi girls' league game in 2004, whose game had skill, confidence and speed way beyond her years.

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'Can help develop women's football'

Juhi Shah is player-manager of Bodyline FC, a Mumbai-based...

India to host the U-17 Women's World Cup in 2020

India will host the U-17 Women's World Cup in 2020, FIFA confirmed on Friday. 

"We have decided that India will host the next U-17 Women's World Cup in 2020," FIFA president Gianni Infantino said after the FIFA Council met in Miami. 

This will be the second FIFA tournament that India will host, after hosting the U-17 Men's World Cup in 2017, where England beat Spain 5-2 in the final in Kolkata. This will be the seventh edition of the U-17 Women's World Cup, and the second in Asia after...

FIFA strips Peru of hosting Under-17 World Cup, cites infrastructure

Peru will no longer host the Under-17 World Cup in October after being stripped of the tournament by FIFA on Friday over concerns about the infrastructure.

The decision was taken by the bureau of the FIFA Council which features the six regional confederation presidents and FIFA President Gianni Infantino.

The tournament was due to be staged in October after Peru was awarded the competition last June.

But following various inspection visits, FIFA said it found a "number of organizational and infrastructure...

India need defensive discipline, improved finishing in U-16 quarter-finals

India held Indonesia to a draw in their final game to reach the last eight of the U-16 Championships for the first time since 2002.
India held Indonesia to a draw in their final game to reach the last eight of the U-16 Championships for the first time since 2002.

India are through to the quarterfinals of the AFC U-16 Championships in Malaysia, following a goalless draw with Indonesia in Kuala Lumpur on Thursday. This will be their first appearance at the last eight of this event, a qualification for the U-17 World Cup in Peru in 2019, since 2002.

While they have put in spirited efforts in all three group games, their maturity will be stretched in the quarterfinal, where they are likely to face in-form South Korea on Monday in order to qualify for the U-17...

Why you should care about the Under-16 Championships

The four semi-finalists from the U-16 Championships will qualify for the 2019 U17 World Cup in Peru.
The four semi-finalists from the U-16 Championships will qualify for the 2019 U17 World Cup in Peru.

Almost a year since India's FIFA debut at the U-17 World Cup, their successors will eye qualification for the 2019 edition in Peru, when they start their AFC U-16 Championships campaign against Vietnam in Kuala Lumpur on Friday.

What's at stake?

The other two teams in India's Group C are 2016 AFC U-16 runners-up Iran and Indonesia, and India must finish in the top four of the 16-team tournament to qualify as one of the Asian Football Confederation teams for the U-17 World Cup next year.

India...