The northeastern state of Mizoram has, for long, been a breeding ground for football players. The state came into the spotlight after the state team clinched the national championship in 2014. Now, 15-year-old Lalchungnunga, a football player from the state, has been chosen to train at Germany’s prestigious football league, Bundesliga, for six years.
One of eight siblings born to a daily wage labourer, Lalchungnunga overcame poverty and lack of resources to continue his game. His natural flair for the game has earned him the nickname Mizo Messi (the young footballer is a big fan of the Argentinian star) among friends and locals.
Football is one of the state’s most popular sports and the state even hosts its own Mizoram Premier League.
Image for representation only. Photo souce: Wikimedia
Lalchungnunga is one of the state’s many budding footballers whose talent has received a boost from the Tata Trust’s football academies in the region. The footballer was scouted to train with the Bundesliga from one of these institutes, set up as part of a special MoU between Tata Trust and the Mizoram government to enhance local sports talents.
Lalchungnunga’s family is overjoyed at the news, especially his father Chhangte Laldinmawia. Limited by his meagre earnings Chhangte had assumed that encouraging his son’s talent would be difficult, but he is now overjoyed at his son’s achievements.