(Image: Idrees Lone) The coach with young players Photograph:( WION )
The old city of Srinagar was known for producing top-class footballers who even went on to represent Jammu & Kashmir at the national and International level. And the downtown area was known as the hub of football in Kashmir
Srinagar's downtown area has always been in news for wrong reasons. However, it has something positive to showcase now. To revive the legacy of football in the old city of Srinagar, a group of people have come forward and made a football club called "Downtown Heroes FC"
The old city of Srinagar was known for producing top-class footballers who even went on to represent Jammu & Kashmir at the national and International level. And the downtown area was known as the hub of football in Kashmir but in recent years it has lost its touch with the most followed sport in Kashmir.
The club is specially made for the youngsters of the downtown area of Srinagar.
"We want football to be popular in the old city again. We have developed a robust framework to produce not only star footballers but star individuals. This academy would be open for all old city players. It's also a great way channeling the energy of youth and keeping them away from social evils like drugs (case of) which have unfortunately grown rapidly in Srinagar," said club’s chairman, Irfan Shahmiri.
Downtown Heroes FC was started with an aim to revive the lost glory of football in the old city. It was launched in 2019 and the club has already made a name for itself. In its inaugural season, It went to play in the Premier League, Real Kashmir Cup and also went on to win Doon Knockout football tournament title. It has received a lot of applause from the people in the valley.
"Today the club has launched two new teams for Under-16 and Under-12. The main motive behind this club is for holistic development of young people. We have received great response from people and we want it to continue," said Mushtaq Bashir, founder of the club
Now, the club is hoping to collaborate with government sports councils.