***I DON’T HAVE FIFA’S PRIOR WRITTEN CONSENT TO USE, TALK, THINK OR EVEN YELL AT RANDOS FROM MY BALCONY ABOUT ANY NAMES, COUNTRIES OR EVENTS MENTIONED IN MY FIFA WORLD CUP QATAR 2022 COVERAGE, SO FOR COPYRIGHT REASONS FROM HERE ON IN, THE EVENT WILL BE REFERRED TO AS QLAMQTAR 2022.***
The Qlamqtar 2022 World Cup is only about 5 moons away (depending on your own set of lunar circumstances) and the first ever World Cup held in the Arab world promises to be a real doozy. World Cup history is a tale resplendent with stories of triumph against the odds, childhood dreams coming true and unsung heroes becoming legends. As well as dumb idiot losers, wanker fuck ups and teams that are just total bullshit.
But how shall ye learn about these legends, losers and teams that are just total bullshit? Well look no further my wayward friend as I profile all 211 FIFA nations eligible for World Cup qualification. Today, I take a look at India, which has qualified a World Cup once (1950) but later withdrew.
⚠️ ERROR_ERROR_ERROR/Incorrectly selected “Olympics Soccer” instead of “World Cup Soccer” in 1950/ERROR_ERROR_ERROR ⚠️
Nickname: The Blue Tigers
FIFA Ranking: 104 (June 2022)
FIFA World Cup 2022 Qualification result: Failed to advance from second round (AFC) group stage, finishing 3rd in group below Qatar and Oman
Following the withdrawal of all its Asian rivals in qualifying, and showing signs of potentially becoming a major player in the international game, in 1950 India were all set to take part in their first ever World Cup in Brazil. But then…
Citing team selection and preperation issues, Indian football’s governing body made the massive error of not flying to Brazil to take part in the fourth FIFA World Cup. Other possible explanations for the error have surfaced over the years, such as a lack of funds and the prohibitive cost of transcontinental travel, or a protest of FIFA’s recently introduced requirement stating all players need to wear football boots, but these have all been debunked. FIFA offered to foot their bill to Brazil and while some Indian players had preferred to play barefoot or in socks till that point, this was far from a dealbreaker. The real reason appears to be the Indian Football Federation prioritising the Olympics over the relatively new and shitty, second string, Mickey Mouse, bullshit kick around on the other side of the world known as the World Cup. As such, the Indian national team decided to fuck it off.
The Indian national team stayed home, and boy are they and their Blue Pilgrims supporters group sure they did. The Blue Tigers, in the midst of their golden area, in which they pushed France at the 1948 Olympics (in their first ever match an independent nation), won the first ever Asian games in 1951, and reached the semis of the 1956 Olympics, then put all their chips on their Olympic Football Team and have not qualified for an Olympics since (let alone a World Cup).
In short, after the fall of the British Rajj, soccer’s popularity was growing in India thanks to their team’s exploits on the world stage, it qualified for the 1950 World Cup, but then refused their (FIFA-subsidized invitation), their results soon started to suffer, the Indian national cricket team won the 1983 World Cup giving cricket a huge boost in popularity , while at the same time, the national soccer team plummeted to depths never imagined back in the heady days of the 1950s.
One to watch: The cricket instead
You ever watched cricket?? Or the Indian one day cricket team in particular? Or Sachin Tendulkar back in the day? MS Dhoni? Even the leg-spin of Anil Kumble? Or FUCK, the Indian Premier League (IPL) these days?! Or even this, whatever it is?? I mean, shit. Well, you know what, for the obvious reasons above, fuck watching the soccer team and just chuck on the cricket! Whether it’s the 2011 World Cup Final that India won on home soil or even Australia’s routine win over the Indians in the second test at the MCG in 1999 or Bangladesh’s defeat of India at the 2007 World Cup, seriously, whatever it is, it’s better than watching the soccer team.
So whether it’s the South Asian Football Federation championship, or the Nehru invitational tournament (now defunct), fuck watching the Indian national soccer team in anything (well, maybe just give em a glance in next year’s Asian Cup). The IPL just sold the telecast rights to the IPL for $6.02bn, I mean c’mon, You ain’t gonna see no $6 billion contracts being dished our for the Indian national team games anytime soon.
The Highpoint: Sunil Chhetri, India’s greatest athlete in Soccer (individual)
It’s probably best to not discuss India’s achievements in Soccer (team category) but in the individual format of the sport, it’s a totally different story.
In the popular sport of individual soccer match playing, India’s Sunil Chhetri sits 3rd on the list of active international goalscorers (tied 5th all time). With no teammates at all, it’s no surprise he’s also India’s most capped player and its record goal scorer. Chhetri’s remarkable achievements in the arena of the sport of soccer (individual category) are remarkable for someone from a country where cricket greatly overshadows soccer, let alone the sport of 1-on-1 soccer, where 2 players take to the field competing against each other, dribbling across and up and down the entire field to see who can just score the most goals and concede the least throw-ins.
With only Iran’s Ali Daei ahead of him (now retired), the 37-year-old Chhetri stands above all his contemporary continental peers in the sport of individual soccer goal doing. The possible match-ups in the sport (also known as ‘1-on-1 individual madness’ category) can be: ‘striker vs striker’, ‘striker vs goalkeeper’, ‘striker vs defender’ or the the less popular ‘defender vs defender’ or ‘goalkeeper vs goalkeeper’ battles, and in all forms of this fledgling Asian sport, Chhetri dominates.
The thing is though, even he’s unmatched in the sport of individual soccer sport playing in India, he’s actually not even Indian (both parents are of Nepalese origin), so in truth, sorry India, technically you don’t even have a winner in the make-believe sport of 1-on-1 soccer ball goal scoring matchplay activity. Sorry!
Learn the lingo & speak like a local!
AFC ASIAN CUP 2023