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Apollo Tyres partners with Man Utd to encourage football talent

Apollo Tyres, the global tyre partner to Manchester United, launched the United we Play programme to encourage young football talent from across the country. Talented kids will be trained by the Manchester United Soccer School (MUSS) coaches, with the best performers receiving once in a lifetime opportunity to train with the Manchester United’s U-18 team, which will be visiting India for the first time this year in May.

The launch of the United we Play programme was by Ronny Johnsen, ex-Manchester United centre back and midfielder along with Rajesh Dahiya, vice president, marketing, sales and service (India, SAARC & Oceania), Apollo Tyres.

The programme will be held in two age groups, U-13 and U-16 in Delhi, Chandigarh, Mumbai, Goa, Kolkata, Guwahati, Chennai and Bengaluru over the next two months, with around 3000 young footballers expected to take part. The initial programme will be run by local coaches before coaches from MUSS take over. The 32 best performers, selected by the MUSS coaches from across thecountry, will congregate in Mumbai to participate in two training sessions with the Manchester United U-18 squad, who for the first time, will be visiting India on tour later this year.

Speaking at the launch of the programme, Dahiya said, “We have been working towards development of football at the grass root level in India, which helps us interact and engage with the community both at the rural and urban centres. Inviting the Manchester United’s U-18 team, which has been identifying and providing a steady stream of players to the United’s first team, to visit India, is a part of our continuous engagement with the Indian football fans”.

Manchester United’s Director of Partnerships, Sean Jefferson, commented, “Our club has a longstanding relationship with India, hosting five events here since 2016 as well as creating bespoke content on our club channels for our millions of Indian fans and followers. We have seen a massive increase in the popularity of football in India over the last few years. As a club we want to encourage this enthusiasm for the game by engaging with initiatives like

Apollo Tyres’ ‘United We Play’ programme.”

Manchester United’s head of academy, Nick Cox, said “The Under 18’s cultural visit to India is an important part of the squads training. It allows our youth players to experience what it is like to travel as a team to countries, they may have never visited before, meeting the club’s global fans and experiencing cultures and climates very different to their own.”

In addition to being the global tyre partner of Manchester United Football Club, Apollo Tyres has a presence in the ISL, is the principal sponsor of Chennaiyin FC, and the title sponsor of Punjab FC in the I-League , among others. The company is very active in sports sponsorships.

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