The football tournaments such as ‘Goal’ will help the State in regaining its supremacy in football, State Governor Nikhil Kumar said here on Sunday.
He was speaking at the valedictory function of Goal 2014, the inter-collegiate football tournament organised by The New Indian Express (TNIE) at the Thevara Sacred Heart College Ground.
“The State has been in the forefront of producing talented footballers, many of whom had played in the prominent football clubs of the country. We are looking forward to the State to continue its supremacy. Tournaments such as ‘Goal’ will help the State in achieving this task. The tournament has successfully completed three editions and the prize money was increased to `1.5 lakh which is also a positive sign,” Kumar added.
The Governor also presented the trophy to the champions of Goal 2014, S N College, Kannur. In the final, they defeated defending champions Sree Kerala Varma College, Thrissur 4-1. Speaking on the occasion, CPM secretary Pinarayi Vijayan said the TNIE has set a new model in promoting football at the grass-root level by organising a tournament of such a magnitude.
“This initiative will help in revitalising the football scenario of the State. The importance of football seems to be diminishing in some areas of the State. The intervention of a major news paper establishment like The New Indian Express will pave way for the game’s development,” he said.
Union Minister of State for Food and Civil Supplies K V Thomas, Union Minister of State for Civil Aviation K C Venugopal and Excise and Ports Minister K Babu, who were present on the occasion also praised TNIE for its efforts to develop football.
P Rajeeve MP, Kochi Mayor Tony Chammany, Hibi Eden MLA, KFA president K M Mather and SH College principal Prasanth Palackappillil were also present.
TNIE Editorial Director Prabhu Chawla delivered the presidential address while TNIE Resident Editor, Kerala, Vinod Mathew welcomed the gathering.