Delhi: In a move that is aimed to provide its budding players a bigger and all-year-round platform to play competitive matches, Sudeva has acquired one of Delhi’s most successful Football Club, Moonlight FC.
Sudeva is a United Nation supported organisation, running chain of football academies in Delhi NCR. The organisation, founded in 2014, made it to the national fold this year, when they fulfilled criteria to play the All India Football Federation initiated U-15 Youth League.
The organisation is also actively working towards upliftment of destitute children by using football as a tool.
Associated with Noble Prize Winner, Kailash Satyarthi’s Children Foundation, Sudeva has stationed one licensed coach to train kids at the Bal Ashram in Virat Nagar near Jaipur. A firm believer of the ‘Bachpan Bachao Andolan’ - Sudeva Founders Anuj Gupta and Vijay Hakari - have taken their football initiative into Children Home and Juvenile Home too.
“Its been two years since we started and we have been training well. But I wasn’t able to provide my boys a bigger competitive platform. That’s when the idea to acquire a Delhi League Club came in and I am glad Moonlight FC management trusted me and agreed to hand me over the reign of their baby,” co-founder Anuj Gupta said.
“The idea is to play competitive football all the year round. Now we are eligible to play Delhi League, we have U-15 I-League, this year we shall be applying for U-18 and the 2nd Division as well. AIFF is even planning the U-13 youth league. So, we will have lots of competitive tournaments to play, right from the youth level to the senior level,” Vijay added.
Meanwhile Moonlight FC is one of the most successful club of Delhi, currently playing the Senior Division League. Having started its journey 55 years ago, the club have had impressive records in the Delhi League, lifting the title many times since it rose from the C Division of the Delhi League in 1960.
The credit for raising the stock of the club mostly goes to the Late Mohd. Sharif. However, from 1980 the responsibility of running the affairs of the club rested on the shoulders of Sharif's brother Mohd. Haneef, himself a player of Moonlight FC and qualified referee.
Moonlight also boost of producing players like Anadi Baruah and Santosh Kashyap, who are successful coaches today, to name a few.
“The other reason why I was keen on a Delhi Club was to work closely with Delhi Soccer Association. So many things can be done to improve the standard of the league and get it going in a more structured way. I will share my expertise and help DSA in implementing those ideas to improve the league and football overall, in and around Delhi,” concluded Anuj.
To preserve the strong history of the club, the Sudeva management has decided to retain the name ‘Moonlight FC’ and prefixed Sudeva to rechristened the club as Sudeva Moonlight FC.
The management have also decided to keep Mr. Haneef as an advisor to the club.