Football mania grips the visually impaired

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src=' ' class='caption'> Euro 2004 has its share of fans amongst the visually impaired.

updated: February 25, 2007 10:04 IST
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New Delhi:

While they may not be able to see the matches, Euro 2004 has its share of fans amongst the visually impaired. And they are up to date with all the news and results from Portugal. "France and England were my favourites, but now they are out. I think Portugal is good, but even they lost to Greece in the league phase," said a fan. In fact the enthusiasm for the game has prompted the Indian Blind Sports Association to consider including football in the National Games for the blind later this year in December. As in blind cricket, the special football used makes a noise when kicked. The footballs are a gift from the Brazilian government. "The enthusiasm levels are very high We practice till late in the night," said David, coach, Blind football team. Delhi recently hosted a camp to train coaches for visually impaired sports, and the inclusion of football at the camp has also helped increase its popularity. Clearly the enthusiastic response to visually impaired football will continue beyond Euro 2004.