Mumbai, July 7 (IANS) Hosts India were on Friday clubbed with the United States of America, Colombia and Ghana in Group A of the FIFA U-17 World Cup, it was decided in the official draw held here.
The U-17 World Cup will be held for the first time in India from October 6-28.
A total of 24 teams will take part in the youth showpiece to be hosted by six cities across the country. Nigeria are the defending champions.
India will kick off their campaign against the US on October 6 before taking on Colombia on October 9.
The hosts will conclude the first phase with a match against Ghana on October 12. Ghana, for the record, won the tournament in 1991 and 1995.
The tournament’s opening match will be between Colombia and Ghana (Group A) and New Zealand and Turkey (Group B) in New Delhi and Mumbai respectively.
Besides New Delhi where India will play their group matches, the other five cities earmarked for the youth showpiece are Mumbai, Kochi, Goa, Guwahati and Kolkata which will also host the final.
Besides African side Niger and Oceania outfit New Caledonia, India will take part in any FIFA World Cup for the first time.
Two teams from each group along with the four best third placed teams in the group stages will move to the round of 16, to be held from October 16.
The quarter finals are to be held on October 21 and 22 followed by the two semi-finals on October 25 in Guwahati and Navi Mumbai.
The third place game and the final are both scheduled in Kolkata on October 28.
Group A: India, US, Ghana, Colombia; Group B: Turkey, Mali, New Zealand, Paraguay; Group C: Iran, Guinea, Germany, Costa Rica; Group D: North Korea, Niger, Brazil, Spain; Group E: Honduras, Japan, New Caledonia, France; Group F: Iraq, Mexico, Chile, England