MUMBAI, Dec 1: All India Football Federation (AIFF) president Praful Patel on Tuesday said that the national women�s side can qualify for the FIFA World Cup before the men�s team does, despite the less attention given to them.
Patel said the AIFF is hoping for the women�s team to qualify for the 2027 FIFA World Cup. Supporting Patel�s view, the sports ministry asked the AIFF to prepare a �concrete and actionable� roadmap to work towards the women team�s qualification in the 2027 World Cup.
�Women team�s FIFA ranking is better than the men�s team, which is very good, when we had less attention to women�s football compared to men�s,� Patel said in a virtual interaction with the members of the U-17 Women�s World Cup team with Sports Minister Kiren Rijiju in attendance.
�When these kids grow, I feel the women�s team will be participating in the World Cup much before the men ... and I�m very hopeful about 2027 edition (of FIFA World Cup). We will continue to give all the support and I am sure these players will very well represent India in future,� said Patel.
The women�s team is currently ranked 55 out of 159 nations while the men�s team is 104 out of 210 countries.
Rijiju also expressed similar optimism, saying that in the near future, India will qualify for the FIFA Women�s World Cup. � PTI