Football Legends is scheduled for Dec. 15 and 16 at Perks School grounds

An eight-member team from the Manchester Perks Football Club (MPFC), mostly comprising is out promoting football earnestly. It understands that the regular format has its own bit of charm and fan base. To make the sport even more attractive to its fans, it is out conducting the ‘fives tournament’ in the city for three years now.

How attractive is the fives event? It says it is fast-paced and interesting. From field size to team size to game duration everything is short and sweet.

“That’s one reason we decided to venture into it. We started playing these tournaments organised by outsiders in the city. At least four such tournaments were held in a year. Later, we decided to host one from our end. And that’s how the MPFC was formed,” says Hariram Ranganathan, its member.

“Initially, we did not have any long-term plan. We wanted to conduct just a few tournaments and get along with the game. Only later we decided to use this as a platform to identify young talents and shape them into future stars,” he adds.

The first impression turned out to be morale-shattering.

“The response was not to our expectations. Only 15 teams took part. We also went through financial strain. We were dejected,” says T.E. Aadarsh, another member.

“Over a period of time we looked at the positive side and moved on. In the second year, we cut down on our grey areas. We knew the major problem was visibility. We worked on that, and it gave us the confidence and assurance to deliver,” says S. Arun Raj.

“We also looked at the quality side of the event this year. And, it clicked. After two years of struggle, we managed to successfully conduct one in May this year. It attracted 22 teams and there was a decent crowd too to watch these matches. It raised the energy levels in us too. The growth ensured that we were heading the right direction,” says Ashwin Ramamurthy.

With the confidence on the rise, MPFC has now lined up the second tournament – titled the Football Legends – for the year. It is scheduled for December 15 and 16 at the Perks School grounds. “We felt it is the right time as we are all on our semester holidays,” says C. Gokul.

“It will be a day-night affair (8 a.m. to 9 p.m.) mainly to attract the crowd,” says R. Arjun.

“This time we have even sought the support of Ortho One because injuries to players have always been an issue,” says R. Prabhu Raj and Gautam Rajiv in unison.

The tournament is sponsored by DPF, Herring, Iyarkai and EASA College of Engineering and Technology.

MPFC plans to register the club at the earliest and do things professionally. It will be targeting teams from Kerala and nearby areas from next year.

“Once we do that, then we will not look back. We have chalked out clear cut plans in identifying and nurturing young talents. And, we will do it at any cost,” says Hariram.

For tournament registration, contact 9789147707 (Hariram), 9500456096 (Aswhin) and 9092077775 (Gautam).

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