East Bengal

What is India U17 footballer Jitendra Singh doing at East Bengal club?

[caption id="attachment_56508" align="alignnone" width="580"]DSC00600 India U17 footballer Jitendra Singh at the East Bengal club tent on Tuesday. Image Source: Xtra Time[/caption]

Kolkata: India U17 footballer Jitendra Singh made a surprise visit to the East Bengal club today. The defender was seen entering the club tent while the senior team were practising at the club ground under Coach Khalid Jamil. After staying in the club tent for a few minutes, he soon rushed out of the club tent. It was later confirmed that he came to the club to sort out the issues with his passport. East Bengal club is believed to be taking an initiative to get his passport problem sorted out. It is not confirmed yet whether the defender will be seen in Red and Gold jersey in the near future. He still has a contract with All India Football Federation which will terminate in December.

The Federation has decided to sign a contract for 3 years with most of the players, keeping in mind the U19 AFC Championships and U20 World Cup. At least 10-12 players in the India U17 team that played in the ensuing FIFA U17 World Cup have signed the deal. It is not mandatory to sign the deal as they are free to join any club after their contract terminates in December.

It goes to be seen whether Jitendra will sign for the Kolkata giants once his contract terminates with AIFF. He will be joining the national camp which gets underway from tomorrow. The U17 team will leave for the U-19 AFC Championship qualifiers, which will start in Saudi Arabia on November 4. The squad coached by Luis Norton de Matos will leave the country on October 25 and play a friendly against Qatar on October 28. They will then travel to Saudi for the qualifiers.

India is placed in Group D along with Yemen, Turkmenistan and hosts Saudi Arabia. If India can make the AFC Championships in Indonesia next year, they will get a shot at a 2019 U-20 World Cup berth as top four teams will qualify directly.

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