Junior World Cup winning hockey coach Harendra Singh wants to become football coach

Written by: Sujata Sarkar
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Bengaluru, Dec 24: After 31 years of coaching in hockey and recently guiding the junior Indian squad to World Cup glory in Lucknow after a span of 15 years, Harendra Singh is now planning to change his stream.

India win Junior World Cup

The 50-yeear old hockey coach is planning to become a professional football coach in near future. While speaking from New Delhi over phone recently, Junior World Cup winning coach Harendra said, "Next year I will do the C license coaching under the All India Football Federation (AIFF). Then I have desire to earn the other advanced coaching degrees stage wise. I can promise that if I am given an opportunity to join the country’s any leading football club I can change the standard of Indian football also as I have done in Indian hockey."

File photo: Harendra Singh (left) with former badminton player Aparna Popat

Harendra’s interest may sound surprising apparently but he has also rich football background. He had participated in the Subrato Cup football championship.

He watches La Liga and EPL matches almost every night through television, even during his engagement as a coach with the junior Indian squad for last two-and-half years.

And that might have been the reason, Harendra's 11-year old son Atharva seems to have chosen football. The coach did not forget to reveal that his son trains at Bhaichung Bhutia academy in New Delhi and he was recently selected in the Barcelona youth programme by the scouts who came from the legendary club.

Harendra said, "It was a part of Barcelona’s youth programme and the scouts came from the legendary club. My son was selected and travelled to Barcelona for a three-week training there. I am a blind supporter of Barcelona and my son loves Real Madrid. So, due to engagements with hockey I could not give time to my son for so many years. But now my contract with Hockey India is over. I am free. So there is every opportunity for me shift and as I am blind fan of football I want to test my future career with football."

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