In conversation sans coffee (version 2.0)- With Akhil Kothari

Akhil Kothari, Kenkre FC's Under 17 Coach

So on the penultimate day of the 5th edition of the Kenkre Champion’s League, our main man Kaushal Shukla got the opportunity to interview another young Kenkre gaffer, Akhil Kothari.


He was a man at loggerheads with himself on the final day of the tournament as both the Under-17 teams coached by him K- Blues and K- Greens battled it out for the top of the table finish with the K- Greens eventually clinching the championship in a thriller two game series affair on account of goal difference.

So the tournament comes to an end today with a double win… How was the journey, what were the challenges?

We started with the selection of these teams in October, and most of these boys are in the 10th grade or Junior College, so the main challenge is to motivate them to come for practice because you really can’t force them. Once past that, we sat and planned a system on how to train them. These teams then apart from playing in the Kenkre Champions’s League also played a private tournament and are in the running for qualification in the MDFA 1st Division. So yeah, it’s been pretty good.

Now, you coach both the K- Blues and the K- Greens. What were your words to them today as they were indirectly pitted against each other for the final trophy?

I had a combined team meeting before the matches, I just told them that there has to be no rivalry factor involved for you are competing against your own team mates. They were working on a goal difference of +9 and the Greens scored 10 goals to secure the first place. The essential thing is to just motivate and encourage these kids from the grass roots, under- 17 level to do better, because then only will they progress and perform at the under- 19 and senior level in  the future.

So, when they faced each other earlier in the tournament.. what did you do, it was basically YOUR team against YOUR team?

It was difficult! (a sense of relief enveloped across his face!) I was just standing at the centre and I instructed both the teams to concentrate on their own game and play according to the planned system. The mantra was to play tough and not rough football. They did that effectively, and the match ended in a draw.

On the tournament as a whole, what do you infer about its scope especially when it comes to all the small kids who participate?

A bright future lies ahead, I was watching a few kids earlier on and told my colleagues about the same. This is the basic level and the place to spot young talent because these are the guys you can watch out for, and when they make the cut in the youth teams, it enables us to know the growth in their performance from their earlier days. It’s a great opportunity at a young age if you bank on it.

With this we wished Akhil all the best for his MDFA stint and also hope to see him back next year coaching the Under- 17 fellows in the Kenkre Champions League probably yet again with his team facing his team!

Oscar SSE to conduct trials for multiple age-groups in Mumbai

Mumbai based Oscar SSE will conduct trials for their youth teams on 17th April at the Karnatak Sports Association ground. Oscar SSE is a 2-star AIFF Accredited Academy plying their…


FC Hydra invites all aspiring footballers in Bengaluru for a Trial

FC Hydra will be holding trials for all the aspiring footballers for the upcoming KSFA C Division League. The club has previously held trials for the Women’s team for the…


Kenkre FC to conduct trials for Women’s Team

Mumbai-based Kenkre FC are slated to conduct trials for their Women’s Football Team on the 25th of February at Goan’s Sports Ground in Churchgate. Kenkre FC have long been regarded…


IKF to dispense free international football exposure for children in India

India Khelo Football (IKF) is a non-profit platform aimed at providing kids from India a fair chance to pursue their dream of playing football internationally. IKF shares its vision to…


IDBI Bank to hold trials for a central defender

After successfully conducting their first round of trials on 21st November, MDFA Super Division outfit are now looking to conduct another trial in search of Central Defenders. With football resuming,…


Chedda Nagar FC set to conduct trials for MDFA Super Division

Chedda Nagar Football Fanatics will be conducting trials to reform their MDFA Super Division squad. Being established in 2011, Chedda Nagar is a renowned name in Mumbai football. The team…


IDBI Bank to host trials for MDFA Super Division

With football resuming, IDBI Bank will be conducting trials for the upcoming MDFA Season. The team will participate in the Super Division and will be seen conducting their first round…


Madanpura FA, Sara FA to host trials for the upcoming MDFA season

Sara Football Academy and Madanpura FA to host trials for MDFA Super division & 2nd division and 3rd division respectively on the 19th and 21st of November simultaneously. Sara FA…


FC Hydra to hold trials for women footballers in Bengaluru

FC Hydra will be holding trials for women footballers for the upcoming BDFA A division Women’s league. The club is based out of Bengaluru. FC Hydra will be holding trials…


NLWS FC to hold trials for MDFA 3rd division

NLWS FC is club based in Dadar who have registered themselves in the MDFA 3rd division for the 2020-21 season. The club will be holding trials for the same. Mauli…