While a Bhutanese National football team has existed since the 1970s, it was officially founded in 1983 and joined FIFA in 2000.
On June 30, 2002, the day of the final match of the 2002 World Cup, Bhutan, then the second-lowest ranked team in the world, recorded their first victory ever. They played against the lowest-ranked team, Montserrat, in a friendly match known jokingly as The Other Final, winning 4-0 at the Changlimithang Stadium in Thimphu, the capital of Bhutan. "The Other Final" was organised by Dutch filmmakers.
Prior to the 2010 World Cup, they were the only FIFA member not to have attempted to qualify for the World Cup. Bhutan withdrew from the 2010 World Cup qualifiers because their stadium would not be ready in time for their matches vs. Kuwait. Due to infrastructural problems they did not enter either the 2014 World Cup qualifiers.
The team saw action in the 2008 South Asian Football Federation Cup tournament, reaching the Semifinals, where they lost to India (2-1) during stoppage time of extra time. The team also played in the 2009 and 2011 SAFF Cup.
In November 2012 the Bhutan Football Federation announced the start of the country's first ever national league, the A-Division. Kicking off in December 2012, it features six teams — three from the capital Thimphu — and is sponsored by Coca-Cola. The aim is to improve international standards. Yeedzin F.C. was crowned as the first national champion of Bhutan. In the same week astro-turf was laid at the national stadium with the aim of hosting international matches. On 8 March 2012, FIFA President Joseph Blatter inaugurated football pitches belonging to the Bhutan Football Federation next to the National Stadium in the presence of Prince Jigyel in a special groundbreaking ceremony. The FIFA President's first impressions of the country were positive: "It was time for me to come here and it looks very similar to Switzerland", he said.
Commenting later via his Twitter account, @SeppBlatter, he opined: "Bhutan is a world unto itself, enviably calm. The development index used here is not the Gross National Product but Gross National Happiness".
The FIFA President also stressed that football has important educational and social aspects for young people in Bhutan. "When you're playing football, you're in good condition; and when you entertain people, it's a healthy society", he said. "What's important is not just learning how to win, but also how to lose — and that's the essence of team sports". After being received by the King of Bhutan Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck on 6 March 2012, the FIFA President met with the country's sports' representative, Prince Jigyel and Prime Minister Jigme Thinley.
Speaking at a press conference following the meetings, Blatter said: "The future of football is in Asia, where two-thirds of the world's population lives. It's not only an economic market, but it can be a football market".