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Boy from red-light area set to train at Manchester United

Rajib Roy

It has been a roller-coaster journey for young Rajib Roy, who is set to fly to Old Trafford for a 15-day training stint

Rajib RoyNew Delhi: From the dark by-lanes of Kolkata’s red-light area to the training arena at the world renowned Manchester United Football Club, it has been a roller-coaster journey for young Rajib Roy, who is set to fly to Old Trafford for a 15-day training stint.

16-year-old Roy, who lives in Sonagachi, a red light area in Kolkata, with his mother and 11-year-old sister, grew up playing barefoot football and watching his favorite team Mohun Bagan play.

And today, this breakthrough has come as a result of an initiative which the age-old Kolkata club is part of.

Roy is a member of the Mohun Bagan Kolkata Goalz team, which he joined two years ago at Rabindra Kanan Park, situated near the locality in which he lives.

Kolkata Goalz is a community-based football training initiative of English Premier League, British Council, Kolkata Police, Kolkata Municipal Corporation and All India Football Federation.

Rajib will be visiting Manchester United for 15 days training under the watchful eyes of the youth coaches of the club. He was spotted by Manchester United scouts in a school football tournament.

“I am elated at this unique opportunity and I must thank my mentors, coaches, friends and last but not the least Kolkata Goalz,” an elated Roy said.

Its prime objective is to impart social bonding and values among the young kids of the under-privileged society and to bridge the gap between the community and police through the beautiful game.

After joining the Kolkata Goalz team he realised his ambition of playing football under professional coaches of the Mohun Bagan club. And now, he looks set to realise bigger dreams.

“We feel proud with the success of Rajib, who will not only cherish his success to be the part one of the biggest clubs of the world but will also be a role model for over 1,000 youngsters who are part of the Kolkata Goalz project,” Mohun Bagan said in a statement.

“Mohun Bagan and Kolkata Goalz family wishes him luck and hopes that he will be to able realise his dreams,” it added.


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