- NET Web Desk
Indian Women’s National Team Forward, Ngangom Bala Devi has been named as the All India Football Federation (AIFF) Womens Footballer of the Year 2020-21.
The 31-year-old International Women Footballer thanked her coaches and family, who had played a key role in her progress as a footballer.
“I’m so happy to have won this award. A big thank you to the AIFF and all the fans for their support. I’d also like to thank my coaches — both at my club in Rangers, and in the national team, and also and all the coaches that I’ve played under in the past. A big thank you also to my family and all my teammates for all the support.” – Bala said after receiving the award.
Bala currently plays for Rangers Women’s FC in Scotland. She made her debut for the team in February 2020, and created history as she scored her first competitive goal for the side in December last year.
She is the first Indian woman footballer to sign a professional contract with an overseas club in Europe.
Bala was a part of the Manipur U19 team that took part in the Under-19 Women’s Championship in Assam in 2002, where she was declared the best player. She has also represented the Manipur Senior Women’s Football Team in the India women’s football championship.
She also captained India Women’s National Football Team in 2016 South Asian Football Federation Women’s Championship.
While a semi-professional footballer in India, Devi also worked as a policewoman for the Manipur Police Department. She was promoted to Inspector rank following her impressive performance in football for Rangers WFC.
Devi represented Manipur Police Sports Club in several leagues and tournaments organised by All Manipur Football Association (AMFA).
Besides, Bala Devi, 19-yr-old Manisha, who is also a forward, bagged the AIFF Women’s Emerging Footballer of the Year Award for the first time.