first_imgDeco, who is to feature in the Premier Futsal tournament, Deco, who is to feature in the Premier Futsal tournament, which is to be held in India next month, conceded that Brazil — his country of birth — was currently struggling to come up with a winning combination. “Older teams from Brazil had very good players. The current formation is not working very well. We have the talent but our players have to work harder,” said Deco, who had won the UEFA Champions League in 2004 with FC Porto and 2006 with Barcelona and represented his adopted country, Portugal, in two Euros and as many World Cups. Chhetri said he was initially backing Spain but there could eventually be a surprise winner, like Portugal. Speaking on the proposed merger between the Indian Super League and I-League, Chhetri said he was surprised to read the details in the media after the one meeting convened by the All India Football Federation. “I was told not to speak about it after the first meeting where a preliminary draft was submitted but was surprised to read details of the meeting the next day. But its not fair on my part to talk about it now before all stake holders come together,” said Chhetri, who has won two I-League crowns with Bengaluru FC and represented Mumbai City FC in last seasons ISL. “I have been playing football over the last 13 years and it has witnessed massive growth, not only in the numbers playing but also in those following. The Under-17 World Cup (to be hosted by India next year and whose broadcast rights have been bought by the Sony network) is going to be a massive step. But whatever we do is not enough from where we are (in world ranking),” he said. SPNs CEO, N P Singh, promised a good build-up for the first-ever FIFA event to be hosted by the country but said it was for the AIFF to provide the details. “A whole lot of events have been planned from now up to the Under-17 World Cup. Its going to be an intensive calendar but its the prerogative of AIFF to announce it,” he said. SPNs Executive VP and head of its sports cluster, Prasana Krishnan, dispelled doubts about next months Premier Futsal multinational league saying “it is on track”, although it has come under opposition from the AIFF. PTI SSR NRB CM CMadvertisementlast_img read more