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Indian footballer's body gets FIFPro membership
New Delhi | November 28, 2007 7:05:13 PM IST
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Indian football players received a big boost as the Football Players Association of India (FPAI) was given a candidate membership by the FIFPro, the worldwide representative organisation for professional footballers.

"This a major step ahead for Indian football. FIFPro's advice will help us to give Indian football a new direction by professionalising the set-up," India captain and the FPAI president, Bhaichung Bhutia told IANS Wednesday.

FIFPro, which has 43 members, is recognised both by the world soccer body FIFA and also the UEFA. All the major football-playing nations like England, Brazil, France, Italy and Argentina are members of the FIFPro.

The provisional affiliation without voting rights was given to India at the annual congress in Barcelona last Tuesday. India is the second Asian country after Japan to get the FIFPro membership.

Players, who are members of an association affiliated to the FIFPro, are by extension also guaranteed of the support of players' associations in other member-countries. All players are entitled to independent and fair arbitration in national and international disputes.

"With the membership we can raise our voice on the issues concerning Indian professional footballers. Our interaction with some of the top-footballing countries will help us to develop the game at the grass root level," said FPAI's chief executive Sumit Mukherjee. (IANS)

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