Dhruvmil Pandya the League’s Chief Executive, Richard Scudamore.
A 15-year-old from India has been given a taste of the Premier League lifestyle after winning a competition to train with Crystal Palace’s Academy.
Dhruvmil Pandya from Mumbai was identified as the outstanding talent among more than 350 teenagers who competed in the ‘Play for Palace’ trials.
“There were so many good players, but once it got down to the final eight I knew I was in with a chance,” Dhruvmil said.
“This is a dream come true for me to travel to England and train with the Crystal Palace Academy.
“I hope in a few years Indians will be playing in the Premier League or at big European clubs.”
Dhruvmil, who has recently been selected to represent the Indian national under-17 team, met Palace manager Alan Pardew during his time in London and also attended Academy classes and took part in an Academy match against Millwall.
The youngster also watched Palace’s Premier League match against West Bromwich Albion and was taken to Wembley to see Aston Villa upset Liverpool in last Sunday’s FA Cup semi-final.
Play for Palace was a partnership between Crystal Palace and Indian Super League club Mumbai City FC.Premier League chief executive Richard Scudamore is hoping to see Indian players break into the English top flight.
“The way football has taken off out there I am sure that over the next five to seven years players will come through who will be good enough to take their place in the Premier League,” Scudamore said.
Gurpreet Singh Sandhu became the first Indian footballer to play for a top-tier European club on Wednesday when he made his debut for Stabek FC in a Norwegian Cup tie against Runar.