Hyderabad footballer achieves rare feat

Aadarsh Narayanapuram came a step closer to realising his dream of playing in the senior division in Spain as he acquired the players’ licence for Europe

By Author  |  Published: 1st Mar 2021  12:07 amUpdated: 1st Mar 2021  12:39 am

Hyderabad: Telangana teenager Aadarsh Narayanapuram is living his dream in Spain. The 18-year-old footballer, who is training with Spanish club CD Olimpic de Xativa with the Juvenile B (Youth team) in Valencia, came a step closer to realising his dream of playing in the senior division in Spain as he acquired the players’ licence for Europe.

Speaking from Valencia, Aadarsh said he was delighted to get the licence. “I am really happy because getting the players’ licence for Europe is not easy. I worked very hard for this. Everyone dreams of this opportunity. I haven’t played matches because of Covid-19. But we are starting our training now and I will be playing matches next week, representing my club in the youth category,” he said.

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Aadarsh also revealed that he would be promoted to the senior team once the season ends in June. He hopes to make the most of the opportunity in Spain to grow as a player. The lanky striker aims to play in the Indian Super League (ISL) and says donning the Indian colours is his ultimate dream. “My goal is to play in ISL and I felt very proud when I saw Hyderabad FC in ISL. It was always my dream to see my own city team playing in ISL. Playing for India is my ultimate goal. There is nothing like representing your own country,” he added.

Aadarsh’s tryst with football started as a nine-year-old at Oakridge International School. He was trained by Arsenal India School. He then went on to play for I-league club from the city Fateh Hyderabad for one-and-half years in the under-16 category. During the period, he got to train in Germany, Arsenal and Tottenham in London with Milton Keynes team where he represented them in the World Sports Meet Championship in Paris.

“When I was in the summer camp with Arsenal, I was awarded the best player recognition. After a two-month selection process, I got selected for DFI Academy in Germany. But later, I was selected for the club in Spain when I got through the open selection trials in Bengaluru, conducted by former Real Madrid captain Oscar Ruberio. I was the only one from South,” said Aadarsh who admires Tottenham Hotspurs’ captain Harry Kane.

The youngster is completing his two-year training stint with the club. Speaking about the game, he said, “Game experience is the most important for a player. Without knowing different circumstances and match situations, we can’t learn much. I have learnt a lot while playing here. Now I can train with the senior team. The style of game here is different from India and that helps me become a better player. I have that advantage over other Indian players.”

Meanwhile, Telangana Football Association secretary G Palguna said it was a proud moment for the State. “We have requested him to come to India next year so that he can play for the State. He will then be playing in ISL,” he said.

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