The Indian men’s football team has got permission from the Sports Ministry for participating in the upcoming Asian Games in Hangzhou, China. The competition is all set to start from September 23. The national football team didn’t get permission to participate in the Jakarta Games in 2018. They are currently 18th in Asia and the sports ministry’s rule states that in a team sport, only the top eight teams will get the chance. However, the sports minister Anurag Thakur tweeted that both the men’s and women’s national football teams will take part in the event.
“Indian Football has been on an unprecedented rise recently…:” Kalyan Chaubey appreciated the teams for their improvements and thanked the Government of India for the opportunity
The Indian team was set to miss another Asian Games for the top eight reasons and financial issues. It now seems like a miracle. The team has improved a lot under Croatian coach Igor Stimac. India has entered the top 100 in FIFA ranking once again after winning the SAFF championship. Based on their impressive performances, Union Sports Minister Anurag Thakur sent out the announcement. He confirmed the participation of both Blue Tigers and Blue Tigress at the showpiece event. The AIFF has prepared a list of 50 under-23 players and forwarded it to the respective clubs.
Good news for Indian football lovers!— Anurag Thakur (@ianuragthakur) July 26, 2023
Our national football teams, both Men’s and Women’s, are set to participate in the upcoming Asian Games.
The Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports, Government of India, has decided to relax the rules to facilitate participation of both the…
AIFF President Mr. Kalyan Chaubey said, “It’s indeed an important day for Indian Football and a testament to our resolution to develop the sport in India. We thank the Government of India and the Ministry of Sports & Youth Affairs for their support and for providing special compensation to Indian Football for the 19th Asian Games.
“Indian Football has been on an unprecedented rise recently, and I believe this impetus will further boost our players’ morale in all upcoming events. It’s my honour to represent the All India Football Federation and with moments like this, further, encourage our steadfast commitment to continue developing the ecosystem in the country.”
Both women’s and men’s teams have been spectacular in recent months. The men’s unit won Intercontinental Cup and SAFF Championships earlier this month. As a result, they entered the top 100 men’s ranking. The women too secured a spot for the second round of Olympic qualifiers with a 5-0, followed by a 4-0 win against Kyrgyz Republic in the first round Group G match.
Dr. Shaji Prabhakaran and Igor Stimac thanked the Sports Ministry for giving them the opportunity to send Indian Football Teams to China for the Asian Games 2023
The AIFF Secretary General, Dr. Shaji Prabhakaran said, “It is very encouraging for Indian Football that the Government has allowed the participation of men’s and women’s football teams in the Asian Games. This decision of the MYAS has further encouraged all our stakeholders, and with the game time at Asian Games, our players will gain tremendous exposure playing against some of the giants in Asian football. We will continue to work hard with a focus to deliver success on and off the pitch and reach our goals as per Strategic Roadmap Vision 2047.”
The Indian men’s team Head Coach Igor Stimac said also thanked the Sports Ministry and AIFF for giving them the opportunity. He said, “It’s a great day for Indian football and an enormously encouraging decision by the honourable Sports Minister Anurag Thakur ji and our government! Big thanks to all of them for allowing us the opportunity to challenge the best teams in the Asian Games. I will also like to give a big thanks to our President, Mr. Kalyan Chaubey, Secretary General Dr. Shaji Prabhakaran, and all the others for this.”
The Indian Men’s Team has a rich history in the Asian Games over the years. They clinched gold in the inaugural edition in 1951 and then finished top again in 1962. They won a bronze medal in the 1970 games. The inaugural edition was hosted by India. They made it memorable by winning the gold in Football.