Thinley Namgay  

Paro FC lifted three titles at the BFF National Youth League 2023.

All the final matches were played on August 20 at Changlimithang Stadium in Thimphu.     

Paro bagged first positions in the categories of U-16 boys and U-14 girls. Paro’s U-14 boys’ squad landed in second place.     

Last year, Paro FC’s boys were runners-up in the U-16 boys’ category. 

Paro FC’s U-16 boys clinched the title against BFF Academy 4-1 in a penalty shootout. In the same category, Ugyen Academy (UA) FC’s girls defeated Phuentsholing City FC 4-0.  

In the U-14 boys’ group, Paro lost to Samtengang Academy 3-2 in a penalty after ending the game 3-3.  However, Paro FC’s U-14 girls won against Thimphu Women’s FC 4-0.   

Paro FC’s coach Gopal Rai said that quality training, suitable planning of training sessions based on players’ age and ability, and commendable diet helped their players outshine in the tournament. 

Gopal Rai also attributed their success to notable training facilities and proper guidance on psychological aspects and professionalism.  

He said that other teams were equally competent but lacked in terms of team spirit, pace, and technical and tactical abilities.  

According to Gopal Rai, Paro FC’s junior players practice simple football based on game situations. “We don’t train like in an exceptional situation which rarely occurs in the game.” 

The winners and runners-up teams were awarded Nu 50,000 and Nu 30,000, respectively with a winning trophy by the BFF. The three-month tournament witnessed 30 teams from six dzongkhags.  

The National Youth League provides a platform for young players to showcase their talents, besides gaining exposure and experience by interacting with participants from other teams.