India national football team

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This article is about the men's team. For the women's team, see India women's national football team.
For other uses, see Football in India.
India
Shirt badge/Association crest
Nickname(s) The Blue Tigers
Association All India Football Federation (AIFF)
Sub-confederation SAFF (South Asia)
Confederation AFC (Asia)
Head coach England Stephen Constantine
Captain Sunil Chhetri
Most caps Baichung Bhutia (91)[1]
Top scorer Sunil Chhetri (50)[2]
Home stadium Various[3]
FIFA code IND
First colours
Second colours
FIFA ranking
Current 162 Increase 1 (4 February 2016)
Highest 94 (February 1996)
Lowest 173 (March 2015)
First international
Unofficial:
 Australia 5–3 India British Raj
(Sydney, Australia; 3 September 1938)
Official:
 India 1–2 France 
(London, UK; 31 July 1948)[4]
Asian Cup
Appearances 3 (First in 1964)
Best result Runners-up: 1964

The India national football team is governed by the All India Football Federation (AIFF). Since 1948, the AIFF has been affiliated with FIFA, the international governing body for football. In 1954, the AIFF became one of the founding members of the Asian Football Confederation (AFC). The team was automatically advanced to play in the 1950 FIFA World Cup (all the other Asian teams withdrew), but they could not go to the tournament in Brazil due to financial constraints.[5] They won gold medals at two Asian Games and one silver at the Asian Cup.

History[edit]

India qualified for the 1950 FIFA World Cup finals as a result of the withdrawal of all of their scheduled opponents. But the governing body, the AIFF, decided against going to the World Cup, being unable to understand the importance of the event at that time. Reason shown by AIFF was that there was the cost of travel (although FIFA agreed to bear a major part of the travel expenses), lack of practice time, team selection issues and valuing the Olympics over the FIFA World Cup.[5]

The period from 1951 to 1962 is considered the golden era in Indian football. Under the tutelage of legendary Syed Abdul Rahim[6] India became the best team in Asia. India's football team started the 1950s with their triumph in the 1951 Asian Games which they hosted[7] Later next year they went on to participate in the 1952 Olympics, but lost 10–1 to Yugoslavia. Like four years earlier, many of the team played without boots.[8] After the result the AIFF immediately made it mandatory to wear boots.[9] India then went on to finish second in the 1954 Asian Games held in Manila.[10] At the 1956 Olympic Games they finished fourth, which is regarded as one of finest achievements in Indian football. India first met hosts Australia, winning 4–2 with Neville D'Souza becoming the first Asian to score a hat trick in the Olympics and also making India the first Asian team to reach the Olympic semi-finals. They lost 4–1 to Yugoslavia, and lost the third place play-off match 3–0 to Bulgaria.[11]

Then in 1962 India went on to win the 1962 Asian Games where they beat South Korea 2–1 in the final.[12]

Then in 1964 India played in its most memorable tournament yet. The 1964 AFC Asian Cup where they finished as runners-up thanks to then manager Harry Wright. India won their first match against South Korea 2–0, then lost 2–0 to the hosts Israel then won 3–1 against Hong Kong which gave India second in the tournament.[13]

After the Asian Cup India football went downhill. Failure in many Asian Cup qualification tournaments meant that the next time India reached a quarter-final stage was as host in the 1982 Asian Games.[14] Then all of a sudden India managed to qualify for the 1984 AFC Asian Cup after twenty years out of the Asian Cup tournament.[15] But India during the competition failed to make any impact.[16] India would then fail to make the Asian Cup for another 27 years.

Although India failed to qualify for the 2004 Asian Cup, the senior team did well by showing off a silver-medal winning performance in the inaugural Afro Asian Games, with victories over Rwanda and Zimbabwe (then 85 places ahead of India in the world rankings) along the way, losing the final by just 1–0 to Uzbekistan.[17]

As a result, India football has steadily earned greater recognition and respect, both within the country and abroad. India's LG Cup win in Vietnam under Stephen Constantine was one of the few bright spots in the early part of the 2000s. It was India's first victory in a football tournament outside the subcontinent after 1974.In 2003 SAFF Bangladesh knocked out India beating them 2-1 at extra time. In November 2003, then India coach Stephen Constantine was named AFC Manager of the Month.[17]

In 2006 Bob Houghton was later appointed coach of the team. His appointment saw a general progress in India’s performances crowned by victory in 2007 Nehru Cup in August 2007. Houghton then led India to the 2008 AFC Challenge Cup title as they beat Tajikistan 4–1 in August 2008. Winning the AFC Challenge Cup qualified India for the 2011 AFC Asian Cup for the first time since 1984. He also oversaw the Indian team to its second consecutive Nehru Cup trophy by winning 2009 Nehru Cup.[18]

In 2011, India started off their campaign by participating in 2011 AFC Asian Cup for which they qualified after 27 years. India lost all three matches but did manage to perform well in patches.[19]

In 2012, India won the 15th edition of Nehru cup by beating Cameroon 5-4 in penalties as the full-time score was tied at 2-2, making it the third successive Nehru cup win for India.

Home stadiums[edit]

The Indian football team does not have a permanent home stadium as of 2011 due to so many football stadiums not meeting FIFA guidelines. The only stadiums that are FIFA and AFC approved are the Ambedkar Stadium in New Delhi, Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium also in New Delhi, Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in Chennai, Balewadi Sports Complex in Pune, Jawhaharlal Nehru Stadium in Kochi, Trivandrum International Stadium in Thiruvananthapuram, the Salt Lake Stadium in Kolkata, approved after a renovation in 2015,[20] and New Bangalore Football Stadium in Bangalore, which is under construction. For 2017 FIFA U-17 World Cup scheduled to be held in India, three other stadiums namely the DY Patil Stadium in Navi Mumbai, Fatorda Stadium in Margao, and Indira Gandhi Athletic Stadium in Guwahati are the ones, most recently approved by FIFA.

Kits[edit]

India's traditional football jersey colour is blue. The team is known to have used blue shirts with white stripes in the past, as well as a more recent design with light blue and dark blue stripes, both of which are illustrated below. Nike, Inc. is the apparel sponsor of the Indian national football team. They most recently again wore a jersey with a white vertical line on the left side and a white band on the right arm. Now a new kit with blue colour with saffron in 2015

In 2010, Panasonic signed a deal to sponsor the Indian team's football jersey.[21] However, in December 2012, they decided not to renew their contract.[22] The team went without any sponsor for more than 7 months in 2013, until the All India Football Federation (AIFF) signed a sponsorship deal with the Indian multinational oil and gas company ONGC.[23]

Home[edit]

2004–2006
2006 (I)
2006 (II)
2006–2008
2008–2009
2009–2010
2010–2013
2013–2015
2015–present

Away[edit]

2004–2006
2006 (I)
2006 (II)
2006–2008
2008–2009
2009–2010
2010–2013
2013–2015
2015–present

Third[edit]

2008

Personnel[edit]

Current technical staff[edit]

Stephen Constantine, the current Head Coach
Position Name
Head Coach England Stephen Constantine [24]
Manager India Shanmugam Venkatesh
Assistant Coach England Lee Johnson
Goalkeeping Coach Brazil Rogerio Ramos
Physiotherapist India Gigy George
Fitness Coach Australia Danny Deigan
Team Doctor India Sreejith Kamal
Masseur India Liaqat Ali
Video Analyst India Shankar Sigamani
Coaching Family Liaison Officer Scotland Tofu McLaughlin
Kit Manager India Sanjay Dhyani
Director of National Team Scouts India Abhishek Yadav

Players[edit]

Current squad[edit]

  • Match Date: 24 March 2016
  • Opposition:  Iran
  • Caps and goals correct as of: 3 January 2016[25][26]
0#0 Pos. Player Date of birth (age) Caps Goals Club
1 1GK Subrata Paul (1986-11-24) 24 November 1986 (age 29) 64 0 India Mumbai City
16 1GK Karanjit Singh (1986-01-08) 8 January 1986 (age 30) 17 0 India Chennaiyin
23 1GK Gurpreet Singh Sandhu (1992-02-03) 3 February 1992 (age 24) 8 0 Norway Stabæk
2 2DF Aiborlang Khongjee (1987-12-09) 9 December 1987 (age 28) 7 0 India Shillong Lajong
3 2DF Augustin Fernandes (1988-10-13) 13 October 1988 (age 27) 5 0 India Salgaocar
5 2DF Arnab Mondal (1989-09-25) 25 September 1989 (age 26) 21 1 India East Bengal
24 2DF Lalchhuanmawia (1989-04-14) 14 April 1989 (age 26) 3 0 India Bengaluru FC
20 2DF Pritam Kotal (1993-08-09) 9 August 1993 (age 22) 10 0 India Mohun Bagan
21 2DF Narayan Das (1993-09-25) 25 September 1993 (age 22) 11 0 India Dempo
26 2DF Koushik Sarkar (1993-01-01) 1 January 1993 (age 23) 1 0 India East Bengal
7 3MF Eugeneson Lyngdoh (1986-09-10) 10 September 1986 (age 29) 12 0 India Bengaluru FC
10 3MF Bikash Jairu (1982-04-12) 12 April 1982 (age 33) 6 0 India East Bengal
14 3MF Pronay Halder (1993-02-25) 25 February 1993 (age 22) 5 0 India Mohun Bagan
22 3MF Rowllin Borges (1992-06-05) 5 June 1992 (age 23) 8 1 India Sporting Goa
43 3MF Lallianzuala Chhangte (1997-08-06) 6 August 1997 (age 18) 3 2 India DSK Shivajians U18
46 3MF Sanju Pradhan (1989-08-15) 15 August 1989 (age 26) 7 0 India East Bengal
9 4FW Robin Singh (1990-05-09) 9 May 1990 (age 25) 24 4 India Delhi Dynamos
11 4FW Sunil Chhetri (Captain) (1984-08-03) 3 August 1984 (age 31) 88 50 India Mumbai City
12 4FW Jeje Lalpekhlua (1991-01-07) 7 January 1991 (age 25) 32 12 India Mohun Bagan
19 4FW Holicharan Narzary (1994-05-10) 10 May 1994 (age 21) 4 0 India Dempo

Recent call-ups[edit]

The following players have also been called up to the India squad within the last 12 months.

Pos. Player Date of birth (age) Caps Goals Club Latest call-up
GK Laxmikant Kattimani (1989-05-03) 3 May 1989 (age 26) 0 0 India Dempo v.  Guam, 12 November 2015
GK Arindam Bhattacharya (1989-05-20) 20 May 1989 (age 26) 5 0 India Pune City v.  Iran, 1 September 2015
GK Sanjiban Ghosh (1991-07-06) 6 July 1991 (age 24) 0 0 India Mumbai v.  Iran, 1 September 2015
GK Prem Kumar Singh (1995-02-01) 1 February 1995 (age 21) 0 0 India Royal Wahingdoh v.  Oman, 11 June 2015
DF Sandesh Jhingan (1993-07-21) 21 July 1993 (age 22) 7 0 India Kerala Blasters v.  Guam, 12 November 2015
DF Robin Gurung (1992-10-24) 24 October 1992 (age 23) 0 0 India Shillong Lajong v.  Guam, 12 November 2015
DF Rino Anto (1988-01-03) 3 January 1988 (age 28) 3 0 India Bengaluru FC v.  Oman, 13 October 2015
DF Dhanachandra Singh (1987-03-04) 4 March 1987 (age 28) 2 0 India Mohun Bagan v.  Oman, 13 October 2015
DF Gurwinder Singh (1986-04-16) 16 April 1986 (age 29) 0 0 India East Bengal v.  Guam, 16 June 2015
DF Reagan Singh (1991-04-01) 1 April 1991 (age 24) 0 0 India Royal Wahingdoh v.  Guam, 16 June 2015
DF Saumik Dey (1984-08-20) 20 August 1984 (age 31) 2 0 India East Bengal v.    Nepal, 12 March 2015
DF Keegan Pereira (1987-11-07) 7 November 1987 (age 28) 0 0 India Mumbai City v.    Nepal, 12 March 2015
MF Romeo Fernandes (1992-07-06) 6 July 1992 (age 23) 1 0 India Dempo v.  Guam, 12 November 2015
MF Cavin Lobo (1988-04-04) 4 April 1988 (age 27) 7 0 India East Bengal v.  Guam, 12 November 2015
MF Francis Fernandes (1985-11-25) 25 November 1985 (age 30) 29 1 India Delhi Dynamos v.  Guam, 12 November 2015
MF Harmanjot Khabra (1988-12-18) 18 December 1988 (age 27) 2 0 India East Bengal v.  Guam, 12 November 2015
MF Sehnaj Singh (1993-07-29) 29 July 1993 (age 22) 5 0 India Delhi Dynamos v.  Guam, 12 November 2015
MF Jackichand Singh (1992-03-17) 17 March 1992 (age 23) 6 0 India Royal Wahingdoh v.  Oman, 13 October 2015
MF C.K. Vineeth (1988-05-20) 20 May 1988 (age 27) 6 0 India Bengaluru FC v.  Iran, 1 September 2015
MF Dhanpal Ganesh (1994-06-13) 13 June 1994 (age 21) 5 0 India Pune v.  Iran, 1 September 2015
MF Brandon Fernandes (1994-09-20) 20 September 1994 (age 21) 0 0 India Mumbai City v.  Iran, 1 September 2015
MF Satiyasen Singh (1992-03-12) 12 March 1992 (age 23) 1 0 India Royal Wahingdoh v.  Oman, 11 June 2015
MF Mandar Rao Desai (1992-03-18) 18 March 1992 (age 23) 0 0 India Dempo v.  Oman, 11 June 2015
MF Mohammed Rafique (1992-09-20) 20 September 1992 (age 23) 0 0 India East Bengal v.  Oman, 11 June 2015
MF Lenny Rodrigues (1987-05-10) 10 May 1987 (age 28) 22 0 India Pune City v.    Nepal, 12 March 2015
MF Lalrindika Ralte (1992-08-07) 7 August 1992 (age 23) 14 0 India East Bengal v.    Nepal, 12 March 2015
MF Anthony D'Souza (1987-03-02) 2 March 1987 (age 28) 0 0 India Pune v.    Nepal, 12 March 2015
FW Balwant Singh (1986-12-15) 15 December 1986 (age 29) 1 0 India Chennaiyin v.    Nepal, 12 March 2015

Previous squads[edit]