Thinley Namgay  

Thirteen teams from Thimphu and Paro are competing in the second edition of Mini Dragon League which began yesterday at the Changlimithang Stadium.   

The league is one of the grassroots development programmes organised by the Bhutan Football Federation (BFF).  

The tournament is divided into four groups: U-8 boys; U-10 boys; U-12 boys; and U-12 girls. 

Twelve matches were played yesterday among the under (U)-12, and U-10 boys’ categories. 

In the U-12 category, Young Dragon Football Academy (FA) overpowered Young Warrior FA 14-0, Thimphu City FA humbled Friends United FA 10-3, and Paro FA beat Brotherhood FA 4-2.  

While Transport United FA won against Druk Lhayul FA 3-0, Junior FA humbled Tensung FA 7-1, and Paro FA (Thimphu) routed CG-7 FA 8-5.  

In U-10 group, Paro FA won against Brotherhood FA 11-2, Transport United FA defeated Druk Lhayul FA 3 -0, and Junior FA won 2 -1 against Tensung FA.   

Meanwhile, Young Dragon FA defeated Young Warrior FA 7-2, CG-7 FA won against Paro FA (Thimphu) 7-0, and Thimphu City FA won against Friends United FA 7- 4. 

 The U-8 boys and U-12 girls’ teams will play tomorrow.   

Considering the age and strength, game lengths for the Mini Dragon League are less than the usual 90-minute game length for older players.

Coordinator Yeshey Dorji from the BFF said, “The sizes of the pitch in each category are different than the usual ground. For instance, for the U-10 category, the pitch size is 25 metres by 35 metres.”   

“The U-8 teams will play for 40 minutes and 50 minutes is for U-10 teams.  The U-12 teams can play for an hour,” Yeshey Dorji said.    

He said that this year’s league is more like a festival for the kids as well as the parents. “Everyone can come and enjoy.” 

Yeshey Dorji said that to give equal opportunity to other children, Mini Dragon League would be soon organised in Gelephu.  

Besides promoting football, the tournament intends to ensure mass participation, game experience and showcase talents, and meaningfully engage children in the winter break.   

The tournament will end next month.