MOSCOW: One cannot really ask for a better backdrop to play football than the iconic Red Square in Moscow, as the FIFA Foundation Festival tournament brought together the young players from around the world to play 'The Beautiful Game.'
Oscar Foundation, Mumbai has brought four players - Akshay Chavan and Lalu Rathod from Maharashtra and Shital Toppo and Poonam Gautam from Jharkhand to Russia to be part of the initiative by FIFA to help change the lives through Football, which includes all Under-19 players.
They were part of two different teams of mixed genders and played the matches with other kids from different parts of the World.
The ongoing FIFA Foundation Festival began in Moscow on June 23 and will go on till July 3, bringing together 48 non-governmental organisations from 38 countries that work year-round to make a positive difference through football.
The festival culminated with a football tournament and awards ceremony in Red Square on Saturday. The tournament followed the football3 concept – a different way of playing the game that is changing lives across the globe.
Like the name suggests, football3 has three halves. It also has no referees. Mixed gender teams decide the rules before they play and then come together at the final whistle to reflect on their behaviour, with points awarded not only for goals but also fair play.
The Indian contingent led by Ashok Rathod, Founder and Director of Oscar Foundation, expressed their delight at the opportunity of being part of this FIFA initiative and the opportunity to enjoy the Round of 16 game between hosts Russia and Spain at the iconic Luzhniki Stadium on Sunday.