It’s official now. The Indian football teams have no chance of competing in the upcoming Asian Games in Indonesia as the country didn’t feature in the event’s official draws released on Thursday. The Indian Olympic Association (IOA) had decided against sending the men’s and women’s football teams to Indonesia this time after they failed to meet the qualifying criteria set by the Olympic body.
The IOA chose not to clear Indian men’s and women’s football teams after deeming them “incompetent” to win any medals. The Indian men’s football team was hoping to use the Asian Games as a build up for next year’s AFC Asian Cup. The decision has led to a controversy with All India Football Federation (AIFF) calling IOA’s decision “myopic”. The move can be seen as a retrospective one given that Indian football has been witnessing a steady rise in the past few years. The national side has jumped from 173 to 97 in the FIFA rankings, qualified for the AFC Asian Cup 2019 and has successfully hosted the FIFA U-17 World Cup.PTI
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