Thursday, August 27, 2009

Indian Fans , football etc

One of my friend Paddy made a interesting wish one day.,.. It was half time break between match of two top European football clubs (one was Manchester club for sure, other I am not very sure of )..He said he has two wishes "One to see India team winning World Cup Cricket and other Indian team playing in World Cup Football in his lifetime" .Even to me this looks very optimist wish but with sense of realism .

Last year I was watching Indian football team play in AFC CUP final against Tajikistan (When Chettri scored hat-trick ), I was surprised to see all aliens face .. Yaa he is biachung , he is chettri , he looks climax lawrance ,Is he Venkatesh? Nah he doesn't play for India any more... what next?? I cant recognise Steven Dias who was approached by LA Galaxy (beckham plays for) or Mahesh Gawli , Gourmangi Singh , Pradeep for that matter

He claims that his fav club is Manchester United (I can hear shout .. "Its mine too" from all directions now. ) My fav club ..hmmm Bayren Munich ...why maybe I liked Hitler personality in my 10th grade history love for Germany .. so support for German team in all World Cups ..and hence support for Bayren Munich (Not to forget a study which says Jats and Germans share same origin :P ) .....Now that's indeed a big chain but I need some reason for support other than just club popularity in India. Most of my age guys stared watching European football ( mainly English ) in early part of this century (thanks to ESPN , got rights for broadcast in India ) and there is no doubt that no other club has been so much successful as ManU in this decade ( Post 1999 ) , hence more than half of European football following people are ManU fan. No wonder now ManU got plans to open Restr-Bar in Delhi to attract consumer capital of India. (I asked my dad abt his fav clubs , he use to keep an eye on liverpool progress on newspaper on non religious basis ) .I was more confused .There were many in my shortlist ..
"Chelsea" (Just to fight against whole bunch of ManU guys ,Ballack was there)
"Leeds United" (Loved this English club around 2000 but their graph went all downhill after 2001)
"Real Madrid" (Just as you get impressed with any multi starrer Movie,I even purchased their T Shirt )
"AC Milan" (For their impressive play)
"Bayren Munich" ..
At last as a maverick , I went to Non-English Club with above reasons).

Now I am thinking.. Do we really like these clubs or this love has evolved just as we think Hollywood is better than Bollywood in movies , McD burger better than Bun Samosa(or vada paao) . We were not born in Manchester or Munich .Is there some sort of Identity Crisis with our new pub going generation ? Ahh.... or Simply a race to copy West(Few lines comes to my mind from "The End" of The Door ).. A guy living in Birmingham will not support ManU but we will....

Few may say that after saturation with European football they don't find Indian football appealing enough. Then I want them to watch India Sri Lanka Match which India won 3-1 .It surly was harbinger of class we can see evolve in future . In General supporting Indian Football my be like Chicken Egg question .Fans want India to perform first and Indian Football needs fans to drive its economy .

I called few of my football fans friends(including paddy) in India`s match in Nehru Cup (when I saw an amazing goal from baichung ).. Invariable response was "Is India Playing today" :O .I was at shock .India won Nehru Cup last time and then won AFC challenge cup last year.. qualified for AFC CUP (equivalent to EURO) ...Now thats some performance for sure..maybe marketing is to fault here but can we be little intelligent fans not crippled by factors of Philip Kotler book.. (Ahh even i was surprised to see Indian Express giving Indian 3-1 victory as small note coverage on 2nd page of sports express) . I was surprised to see a local football event organized by Delhi Daredevils gather much more crowd than Delhi football league finals.even got better media coverage..Guess GMR group knows better marketing than DSA or even IAFF...

Guess this blog is all questions .. no solutions or answers ..Solution will come by thinking for a cause.Cause is your identity .Heared of I league?? Pune FC ,New Delhi Heroes ,Mumbai FC.....Guess too much...Okie we can start with Mohan Bagan which is almost as old a club as ManU .. We should follow English clubs but we can also follow Indian clubs by atleast keeping an eye on fixtures , results and standings and few clips and matches to start with....

Its not that I am all disappointed with Indian Fans. Delhites have impressed me with full pack ambedkar stadium for Indian matches..Kudos to spirit of Delhi.. Tomorrow its India vs Syria in finals of the Nehru Cup .. I wish I was in Delhi now . Nevertheless Good Luck to Team India to create this unique hat-trick ...


Anonymous said...

Nice Article...
Football is indeed No 2 sports in India today . Can`t wait to see India at AFC CUP 2011

Arpan Uber Chaudhry said...

India is improving as a unit under Bob .He is inspirational personality.Knowing his past (with China,..) I am sure he wanna see India in World Cup as his ultimate aim.
India Won 3 Cup (Nehru-2007,09 , AFC Challenge-2008 ) and were runners up in one other (SAAF -2008). SAAF 2009 is also nearby but we need more of quality international games...

Arpan Uber Chaudhry said...

Not to forget 2010 AFC Challenge Cup

Anonymous said...

Hey I-League starting on 1st Oct .. Mahindra United vs Churchill Brothers SC ... Mumbai Giants vs GOA Giants

Arpan Uber Chaudhry said...

Pune FC is in div 1 .Will catch them at SSC Sports complex here ..bit far from here (20+ km ) but will pep into few matches

paddy said...

its good to see your backing for the rise of indian football...
Indian football needs a kinda cup victory, like what 1983 WC victory was to cricket.

This may take some time but we on the right course.
The football scene in metros is very encouraging with i-league, inter-school tournaments, setup of liverpool youth academy in pune etc.

Also not to forget Bayen munich stars playing in Salt Lake.

India is too big, for FIFA to ignore. Our dream will come true. May the force be with AIFF.

paddy said...

Regarding manu, i support them because of they were the best team when i started watching EPL. (same reason why u supported Bayern, the best bundesliga team of that era ).

And the support has continued ,in spite of the ups and down.

One of the reasons why we follow European leagues is because the quality football ( in the sense of players, game, conditions etc ).

Same is applicable to the huge popularity of IPL. Why do cricket lovers from all the world follow it more, when they have their own T20 leagues?

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Arpan Uber Chaudhry said...

A interesting Article

Arpan Uber Chaudhry said...


Arpan Uber Chaudhry said...

Avinash Kumar Agrawal

I hope to see an Indian player playing in premier league

Today at 12:00 · Delete

Chaudhry Arpan

And I wish to see top European players playing in I-League

Today at 12:17 · Delete

Jit Takhar

Good read. But no matter how good Indian sportsmen do, all will stick to Cricket only. :(

Today at 12:19 · Delete

Chaudhry Arpan

Well I am not against cricket .. Cricket at least bring fame to India..Cricket is not responsible for demise of other sports.. We are... The day we will start supporting Mohan Bagan , churchill brothers more than we do to ManU , Barcelona ,... We have solution upright..Do you wanna see India in world stage? support Indians....Its so simple solution..nothing rocket science about it..

Today at 12:29 · Delete

Sunena Singh

I think u crazy about cricket

Today at 12:52 · Delete

Arpan Uber Chaudhry said...

Jit Takhar

All cricket fans say so :) .. but in India cricket is not merely a sport .. it's become more of lucrative business, Cricketers milking money like nything so are affiliated politicians. Name, Fame are also very much attached to it. Therefore in coming future I don't see any good future for other sports, when it comes to popularity at least.

Today at 13:16 · Delete

Chaudhry Arpan

So what is cricket is milking money.. Are EPL,SPL, German,Italian League players not doing same ? Or NBA ,NHL for that matter .. Money is good for sports.. It also adds to inspiration ..After all sports person have short careers ..not like bollywood ,but there we have no objections ...
Well when we won in boxing and shooting ,wrestling ,Media and people gave much equivalent coverage... Hockey has hardly proved anything in recent past, but again neither people like to watch it..Its a vicious loop..Its we , who decide that we will follow only cricket...Who is stopping us from following other sports ?? Its just simple economics ... We want to see India playing in football world cup but how many names of players in football or hockey can you name .. I guess not beyond 3-4 ...We never do our part and blame others.. now NBA is eying India expand its customer to great Indian market, just like EPL did 8-9 years back when all these ManU fans were born mostly to show off in style.. Like IPL showed, we have costumer-economics base ..Start to promote you own I-League instead of running after European football in search of Lost Identity.And you will be world leaders in years to come

Today at 13:35 · Delete

Avinash Kumar Agrawal

well its a viscious cycle jaise jaise performance improve hoga waise waise support bhi bhadega. and ya european players playing in our league will be greater than wat i suggested earlier. But in present scenario my suggestion will come true first if it ever happens

Today at 18:59 · Delete

Vibhav Pant

i agree with the last comment of Avinash. Other than the performance, other sports also need money, better grounds, proper media coverage and also most importantly (according to me) some big names....many of times when you start watching a new sport which u usually dont follow....u follow big names in that...

Today at 21:42 · Delete

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