Fifa President and The prime minister of India can arrange a meeting for the development of Indian Football.
In India, as big as cricket has been for all these years. Football being the most popular sport in the world, India has never been one of the most recognised teams. Indian football has had a long history with legendary clubs and rivalries, but it never rose to the international stage. The focus of the government and various private agencies has always been cricket, and even though numerous good talent is produced in football in this nation, they remain unnoticed and underutilised.
The resurrection of Indian Football
Football has never been too mainstream and always has been celebrated by its niche crowd. The onset of the Indian Super League was an attempt to replicate IPL’s success by forming franchise teams across the nations, promoting young talent, and adding glamour to the game. This initiative did not create a zone in numbers similar to IPL. Moreover, it was not a prosperous venture. The infrastructure that football gets is not as good and sufficient for the players to come up and showcase their skills on a national level. Footballers are not stars in India. For a game to grow and become big in the crowd, it needs names and stars that they would love to see play. The 2022 Qatar world cup is around the corner, and India has never managed to enter the tournament and be amongst the participating teams. India’s history with football does not translate into the international games that our country plays with its opponents. There are a few names that have exceptional talent and immense respect worldwide, but it is a team sport, and every player needs to contribute in terms of the success of the team.
Infantino: The new hope
The All India Football Federation, at the helm of affairs aims to promote football across India. They have collaborated with different organisations and developed the football training infrastructure. Qatar Football Association is one such name that has been very kind to help out AIFF in helping them strengthen various areas in terms of the game’s development. The FIFA president Gianni Infantino is to visit India to personally meet the Indian Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi and discuss the growth and rise of Indian Football. India is to host the Women’s U-17 Football World Cup, and the FIFA president plans to visit during the final leg of the tournament in October. This meeting might result in positive collaborations and the setting up of international football camps in India where players and coaches from around the world could teach kids, thereby inspiring them to take up the game and excel in it. The AIFF president, the ex-India player Kalyan Chaubey is the first ex-India player to be appointed as the Director of the organisation and, just like Sourav Ganguly, gave BCCI a new direction being a player and a captain on the top of the administration. The nation hoped Chaubey would act as that driving force and propel Indian football in a new direction and help to reach all new heights.
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