The Airtel Rising Stars campaign launched by Bharti Airtel in association with Manchester United has started gaining momentum on the on-ground route with the start of the second leg of its execution. Airtel Rising Stars is a talent hunt programme that will select 12 talented footballers across India to attend a week-long training camp at Manchester United Soccer School and fulfil their soccer dreams.
The second phase will commence in Bengaluru in September. The three best players will be picked from the 120 players already selected in the first phase according to criteria based on aspects mentioned in the Manchester United Scouting Guidelines. The first phase was carried out in 16 cities to choose 120 players from each city. The 48 players in the second phase will participate in the six-day final selection trials by coaches from Manchester United.
The 48 players will be divided into four teams of 12 each and will be tested on all parameters (including physical attributes, individual skills, match situations and their performances in actual matches) before 12 of the best players are chosen to travel to Manchester United for a week to train alongside the Manchester United Academy team.
The first phase comprised auditions in 16 cities including Lucknow, Mumbai, Delhi, Goa, Kolkata, Bengaluru, Kozhikode, Chandigarh, Ahmedabad, Chennai, Kochi, Shillong, Guwahati, Hyderabad, Pune and Jaipur, with the support of the respective state and district football associations.
The on-ground execution of Airtel Rising Stars has been handled by sports marketing and leisure management company, Procam International.