When people talk about India, it usually comes to mind that it is the second most populous country in the world (1.3 billion inhabitants), its rich cultural and religious history, cows as sacred animals and that cricket is the most popular sport in that nation.
However, football is a discipline that continues to grow within the Indian population, although it struggles to catch up with other sports such as cricket itself, badminton, hockey and kabaddi (team contact sport that originated as training recreational warfare).
Efforts have been made for Indian football to grow in interest and level.
In 2011, the Super League was promoted with the participation of world football stars such as Elano, Alessandro del Piero, Frederik Ljungberg, Joan Capdevila and David Trezeguet, and at the time recognized coaches such as the Brazilian Alexandre Guimaraes, today coach of the America of Cali.
All these efforts have made new talents begin to emerge in the country and abroad. One of those cases is Aniket Bharti, an 18-year-old boy who has been part of Orsomarso de Palmira since January.
Aniket was born in Rome, but has her Indian roots. Although he has lived little in his native country due to the work of his parents as diplomats, he feels proud to be able to represent India in world football.
“This opportunity to test in Colombia was given thanks to the fact that my father is India’s commercial attaché for Latin America. He talked to the leaders of Orsomarso and they gave me the opportunity to have this new experience”, commented the footballer.
Bharti is a player who plays as a winger or striker. Before landing on coffee soil he was playing for teams in the second division of Poland.
“Thanks to my birth in Italy and my training in Poland, I was able to dedicate myself to football, a sport that is not the most popular in my country. In recent years they have brought quality foreign players who have served to improve the level”, explained Aniket.
The Indian youth soccer player currently works in the U-20 category of Orsomarso, directed by José Gabriel Sangiovanni and participating in the Telepacífico Cup, a third division tournament in the region.
“In the games he has played with us he has shown good quality. He is a very fast winger, the most important thing is that he is a disciplined footballer, he works very well. Since he debuted in the 1C championship he has had a good performance, he is an interesting player to keep in mind in the professional team”, Sangiovanni pointed out.
an international career
Aniket has trained in Singaporean and Polish football. His career has been developed outside his country.
In January 2015 he signed his first youth contract at the age of 12 with Balestier Khalsa FC in Singapore, one of the best clubs in Asia, where he shared with players up to two and three years older than him.
Later, in July of that same year, he moved to Gdansk, Poland, and there he joined one of the best Polish clubs, Lechia Gdánsk, and played for the U15 team when he had just turned 13.
A year later and due to Aniket’s mother’s job transfer, they moved to Warsaw and signed for MKS Znicz Pruszków, one of the best known clubs in Poland for nurturing and producing young talents like Robert Lewandowski. She was part of the first team that plays in the second division of Polish football.
Bharti is a deep admirer of talented players and has closely followed the careers of Lionel Messi and Neymar Junior. He assures that he likes to observe and learn the techniques of the great stars of world soccer.
“Football in Colombia is very technical and physical. It’s time to adapt and prepare well to stand out. There are very good players here. In these weeks I have been able to play in the Telepacífico Cup and it has been good”, Aniket added.
This Indian soccer player has already had processes with the youth national teams of his country. He has played two games for the under-17 team in which he scored two goals and got one assist.
After two important performances for the U17 team, Aniket was invited to the U21 national team camp. He was the youngest player on the team.
Will make history in Colombia
Aniket is close to becoming the first Asian soccer player to play in our country.
Players from Europe, Africa, North and Central America have passed through Colombian soccer, but, according to historians, there are no records of soccer players from Asia.
The idea of the leaders of Orsomarso is that Aniket can adapt to Colombian soccer and be taken into account in the professional team that disputes the Primera B tournament.
“We hope that he can show his potential and that the coach of the professional team can take it into account,” said José Gabriel Sangiovanni.
Aniket Bharti Fact Sheet
Date of birth: 05/10/2003.
Place: Rome, Italy.
Nationality: Indian. (Origin of her parents).
Height: 184 cm.
Weight: 72 kg.
Positions: Winger, attacking midfielder and forward.
Balestier Khalsa (Singapore).
January 2015 – June 2015.
Lechia Gdansk (Poland).
July 2015 – July 2016.
Znicz Pruszkow (Poland).
July 2016 – December 2020.