Corporate Social Negligence!

India 0-2 Iraq

Posted in Football, India, Indian Football, Iraq, soccer, sports by clash on November 12, 2010

Indian team is in Dubai preparing for the upcoming AFC Asian Cup Qatar 2011. There recent loss against Iraq in a friendly is a welcome change than it being another sad note in our football. Iraq, after all is the reigning Asian Champions. Losing 2-0 to Iraq is no way bad.

Gone are the days or folklore performances of drubbing other Asian nations. Today we simply fail to match to any kind of  teams in Asia. There are some good analysis and afterthoughts appearing on the internet. I really liked this one here. The player analysis over there is quite interesting as it toes along my disjointed perspective about Indian football players. I dont get to watch as much of Indian football, so my opinions could be half baked but now that doesnt seem to be so.

Bob Houghton has implied that he might leave after the Asian Cup. I feel it is quite unnecessary of him to pop up now and talk about his departure plans as we ought to completely concentrate on the preparations even though it might not earn the desired results as we are in a tough qualifying group. Even then the departure talk can take a back seat, he might simply be steering across to put some pressure on the football governing body. With the looks of it, that is the only way to counter such an organization, so it is not very fair to be overtly critical of Bob at this moment.

Lets hope Bob and the team take the positives from the Iraq match and move on. Thinking of underdogs in football, Otto Rehhagel’s Greece in Euro ’04 always comes to mind. It is certainly fanciful of me to expect something of that sort by in India in the Asian Cup but you dont have to pay a penalty for dreaming, so let me!

On another note, the under-23 or the India B team has progressed to the last 16 in the Asian Games. They thrashed Singapore 4-1 enroute to the last 16. Let us wait and watch, what this team can do.

The best part about Asian games and the recently friendlies are there are live streams appearing over the internet. While it was almost impossible to find live streams of Indian football earlier,with this new trend let us hope footy lovers can enjoy their share of Indian football over the internet.

AFC Challenge Cup ’08 is India’s

Posted in Football, India, politics, soccer, sports by clash on August 14, 2008

Far away from the hustle and bustle of Olympics and the brouhaha  about a single gold medal won by an Indian, the unsung heroes of Indian football piped Tajikistan 4-1 in the final match of AFC Challenge Cup that happened in New Delhi. This is not any attempt to discredit the great achievement by Abhinav Bindra in shooting but as always our media went too far in creating an unwanted buzz about his achievement, which looks very puny when weighed against the massive population of India – 1 billion. By creating this kind of a frenzy about Abhinav Bindra, our media is toeing the lines of our corrupt politicians and lazy bureaucrats, who are trying to rally on this gold, while making us forget the pathetic state of sports in India.

The final match was shifted to New Delhi as the Gacchibowli stadium in Hyderabad turned out to be a paddy field because of the incessant rains that belted in the city. As it is, the city did not deserve to hold the finals as hardly any fans turned up to the stadium to watch the tournament. Contrary to what happened in Hyderabad, the New Delhi stadium was filled with a huge number of well-wishers of Indian football, men and women alike.

There is nothing much to be written about the final match as India were already 3-0 up by 23 minutes through goals of Sunil Chhetri and Baichung Bhutia. Over all the team played their heart out. Tajikistan too had their chances in the game, but they were too rattled to stage a come back in the match. Our defenders did quite well barring the occasional glitches that led to dangerous counter attacking by the Tajiks.  The defense would have been much better, if we had the service of Mahesh Gawli, who is injured.

The midfielders had better day on the field and i am quite impressed by Meharajuddin Wadoo who came on as a substitute for N.P.Pradeepan, who was quite rusty in the whole tournament. There is nothing much to talk about Steven Dias; his crosses and spot kicks were the highlight of this tournament. This man has a long way to go.  I am still a bit apprehensive in praising Climax Lawrence, though he had a good game as the rest of the team members.

The forward line was quite exemplary yesterday with Chhetri pitching in with a hat-trick. I criticised Chhetri for his performance level in the group stages, but now, i think i will have to re-think on this. He did play very well, held the ball up, had good close control and scored 3 goals and this is a massive achievement for him as he is a shorty, nippy forward. Whatever you may say, Baichung undoubtedly is the trump card of India and he is so lively and remarkably flexible for his age. I hope we will have his service extended till the Asian Cup of 2011.

The real hero in this tournament is Subrato Paul, for me. He is an outstanding young goal keeper, who will grow in stature in the coming years. He is tall, brave and marvellously acrobatic in the goal. He was very influential through out the tournament and made some splendid saves through out the tournament. He seems to be a very calm and cool customer and i seriously wish that some international scouts pick him up, so that he can have a stint outside the country, which will help him massively.

By winning the AFC Challenge Cup we have sealed a berth in the 2011 Asian Cup happening in Qatar, by then we will have some more talented youngsters to choose from and they will offer serious contention for the current crop of players. Mind you, we have an u-16 team, who have blanked Asian power houses like Saudi Arabia and South Korea. 

The media as always is beating drums for some Phelps who is of no importance to us. it took a bloody 2 hours for the websites of these illustrious beacons of our society to update and write a few lines about our football teams victory. Neither did i expect anything spectacular from them. There will be no victory parades in open buses, no endowments from the governments but Indian football will rally on; sad to say with a corrupt and inefficient man heading the ALL India Football Federation.