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Mumbai (Maharashtra) [India], Dec 14 : Sweden U17 women’s team coach Par Lagerstrom lauded the All India Football Federation’s (AIFF) effort for the women’s game.

“The Indian federation (AIFF) is putting a lot of resources into girls’ and women’s football. They are trying to change the culture and give 500 million girls a potential chance to turn professionals. Football can change lives and if we can be a small part of that, I’m really happy,” AIFF quoted Lagerstrom as saying.

“I told Thomas (Dennerby) right after the game. India were really good close to their own penalty box and were good at the times they had chances to score,” he added.

On Friday, Sweden picked up three points with a 3-0 win against hosts India at the Mumbai Football Arena in Women’s Football Tournament, where former Sweden women’s national team head coach Thomas Dennerby was also taking charge of the India U17 side for the first time at international level.

“They were really well-organized in defence. We have some really fast players like Monica (Bah) – she’s one of the fastest players in Sweden and strong too. Both the Indian defenders read her play well and matched her speed. In defence, you need to be organized and play together, which they did. I was really impressed by that,” Lagerstrom said.

Lagerstrom said these tournaments are really helpful for the side especially with Sweden set to host the UEFA Women’s Under-17 Championship 2020 in May next year.

“I think such tournaments are very very useful. First of all, our task is to prepare players to become elite players for the future. U17 and U19 players are the ones who will play in the senior team later and will aim to win medals at various championships,” Lagerstrom said.

“A good advantage of coming to a different part of the world is that such championships will be played across the world and against different kinds of teams. So, that is education for the team and giving these young players such experience is very important for us,” he added.

Sweden will now face Thailand in the next match of the Women’s Football Tournament 2019, which will take place at the Mumbai Football Arena on Sunday, December 15.


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