Football has never been as popular as it is today in India, thanks to a lot of funding and interest showed into it by the businessmen around the country. The country has gone from a less popular league to one of the most watched football leagues in the Asian continent. So, the question now is whether India has gone any level up? The answer is simple and most evidently yes.
The introduction of the Indian Super League brought a lot of Indian players as well youngsters into the frame and has seen the Indian National Team benefit as well. Numerous players have caught the eye of the National Team coach and a few have come into the team as main-stayers as well. The performances of the Indian National Team has been excellent in the past year as well.
However, the kids have made an even bigger impression on a global level. India hosted the FIFA U-17 World Cup in 2017 which finally opened up a chance for the young stars to fulfil their dream. Yes, the Indian U17s went out in the group stage but the energy and the enthusiasm added with the individual flair of some of our youngsters were glimpses of what could be an exciting future for India in football.
Players like Dheeraj, Komal etc.. have been much talked about with the goalkeeper Dheeraj being called by clubs in Europe for trials. India cruised into the Top 100 in the FIFA Rankings last year which was an unbelievable achievement for a country who has just started a revolution in the sport. Surely the ISL have helped and the game is even being put to the grassroots level. All these years of negativity have suddenly turned into optimism; a vision of a beautiful future for Indian Football and the players.
The country has some amazing young talents who will find their feet into the elites slowly and steadily if managed well. Even though it won’t be an immediate success for the nation, the people here believe that success isn’t far away. As a matter of fact, it is just a few years ahead of now. If football manages to be the same but improving every single day, then it is, in fact, possible that Indian Football could someday be among the top tier nations in the world of the beautiful game.