Indian football has a rather strong history which spans over a century. And every time this history is dug up, the city of Kolkata shines brighter than the others.
Many a legends and teams have come to India in the past. And most often than not, they have chosen to play in Kolkata over the other cities. The likes of Pele, Maradona, Oliver Khan, Bayern Munich have all step foot in Kolkata. But now it looks as if there is a new wave in Indian football. And slowly but steadily the Kanteerava Stadium in Bengaluru is taking over the centre stage.
— Indian Football Team (@IndianFootball) June 14, 2017
The Kanteerava Stadium is the home of two-time I-League champions Bengaluru FC. And it boasts one of the best supporter bases in the whole of India. And yesterday’s match between India and Kyrgyzstan was a perfect example of that. Indian football has always had passionate support in almost every era. But most of that has been reserved for clubs and franchises. But the people of Bengaluru are setting a new trend by going all out to support the national outfit.
Yesterday as you switched on the television set and see India walk out on the field you feel something is not right. You hear fans screaming, the sound of drum beats and for a second you feel that you might have the wrong channel. Then after a brief moment of hesitation, you realise that it is in fact “India vs Kyrgyzstan” and all that noise is coming from the stands. Well for football lovers all across the world this might seem very normal. But for Indian people, it’s something very unique. People just do not show up for National team matches. But Bengaluru is all out to change that.
— Naveen Peter (@peterspeaking) June 13, 2017
And just when you thought that things could not get any better, Sunil Chettri decides to score a brilliant goal. And the whole of Kanteerava erupts. It literally does. The noise was so big and the celebrations so huge that even the commentator’s voice got buried under it.
Maybe this is what Indian football needs. A bunch of crazy passsionate supporters who come out and support their country irrespective of who is playing. And the folks at Bengaluru are playing that elusive role of the Pied Piper.
Don’t believe us? Take a look yourself.
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