Yesterday India drew with Qatar and thereby the London dream ends. In the first leg of this tie India were rather unorganized and paid the penalty by losing the match by the scoreline 3-1. Although Jeje had scored a crucial away goal but the pathetic performance of the defenders meant India went on to lose the match. Yesterday match showed a definite improvement in their performance but not enough to earn them a spot in next round of qualifications for London Olympics 2012.
We now take a look at reasons why India have failed to qualify for Olympics since 1960 where they lost all of their 3 matches in group stages.
Today India are struggling to qualify for top notch FIFA competitions and it is hard to imagine that India were once a team feared in Asia. Indians were used to be known as “The Brazilians of Asia” due to flair and dribbling skills. While the Indians went to a deep sleep after 1960, the sport picked up it pace particularly in the West. Other countries particularly in Europe developed some quality infrastructure and turned professional. There are plenty of World Class stadiums in each of the top ranked nations. Each clubs has their own training ground(which contains additional fields) and stadiums while our clubs find it hard to have their own training grounds and stadiums. The stadiums which are there fail to pass the AFC criteria(this is normal standard required to hold AFC Champions League matches)
In India the domestics league is still in nascent state and are in between amateurism and professionalism. The league matches are held in hot afternoons and in poor quality stadiums. There is no basic arrangements for fans such as quality sanitary, quick transport after matches, seats etc
There are not enough number of coaches(with necessary coaching badges) who can manage a club or train the youth. Those that are there do not have enough experience(with a few exceptions) in the top flight. There are many young Indians who are there willing to go to coaching but do not know the necessary path and conditions.
4. Marketing and Sponsoring
AIFF needs to market the game properly so that it can properly spread throughout India which in turn get the attention of business men who would be willing to invest their money. Mostly the I-League(the domestic league) consists of teams from two regions i.e. Bengal and Goa. Recently due to clubs such as JCT FC closing down we have already many strongholds of Indian football and some are near extinction(places like Kerala and Karnataka). AIFF clearly needs a new strategy to market Indian football and make the availability of tickets for the matches of national team more easily available.
5. Youth System
There is no proper youth structure through which a young player can come through.An average youth player starts its training when they can start to walk while in India they start at the age of 15 this results in lower time of training. The youth players by the time the reach the age of 24 the lack in total training time and playing experience since clubs do not give enough chances to their young player and depend on average foreigners which result in lowering the overall level of the player from other countries.