Indian fans vote newcomers in AIFF's misguided All-time Asian Cup XI poll
In an attempt to increase their visibility on social media, the official Twitter handle of the Indian football team conducted a poll on the microblogging site wherein the fans had to select an all-time Asian Cup XI. However, the results shocked everyone as they voted newcomers to the All-time Asian Cup line-up.
As one can see, nine out of the eleven players haven't even played a single AFC Asian Cup match yet. Only Sunil Chhetri and Bhaichung Bhutia have donned the jersey in the continental extravaganza. Gurpreet Singh Sandhu was part of the Indian squad that flew to Qatar in 2011 but didn't make a single appearance.
Moreover, Bhaichung Bhutia only made a substitute appearance in the 78th minute in the final match against South Korea. The Sikkimese Sniper's contribution wasn't so significant to earn him a place in the all-time Asian Cup XI.
The official Twitter account of the AIFF (and the Indian national football team) had given a plethora of options for the fans to choose from. But the fans decided to stick to the current crop of players as they had little idea about the players from the past.
The AIFF nominated the following strikers:
The AIFF nominated the following midfielders:
The AIFF nominated the following defenders:
The AIFF nominated the following goalkeepers:
Firstly, the AIFF shouldn't have nominated those players who didn't make a single appearance in the AFC Asian Cup. Even those who were part of the squad but didn't play like NS Manju, Govin Singh, Rakesh Masih, and Clifford Miranda shouldn't have been nominated.
Secondly, the fans failing to acknowledge the contributions of the 1964 Indian team is a sign of a lack of knowledge of Indian football history among the masses. The 1964 AFC Asian Cup team, which finished as runners-up in the tournament beating defending champions South Korea and Hong Kong in the process, were head and shoulders above the other players.
However, the fans failed to acknowledge the predatory striking skills of then 20-year-old Inder Singh, defensive solidarity of Jarnail Singh, and the reflexes of Peter Thangaraj. Maybe the AIFF could have provided some info on the strikers from the golden generation of Indian football when the conducted the poll.
That said, the knowledgeable Twitterati took a dig on these fans and expressed their creativity in the best way possible. Here is the quirkiest collection: