Sunday, June 13, 2021

Real Kashmir head coach David Robertson dedicates British Empire Medal award to Snow Leopards

AIFF Media  

Real Kashmir head coach David Robertson received a British Empire Medal (BEM) in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List on 12th June, 2021 for services to the local community of Jammu and Kashmir during his coaching tenure with Real Kashmir FC.

The award recognised the Scottish manager's outstanding contribution to the sport and the community as head coach of the Snow Leopards since January 2017.

From winning the Hero 2nd Division League in 2018 to becoming the first club from the Valley to compete in the Hero I-league, Robertson has been a key part of the incredible journey that had captured the imagination of Indian football fans since the very beginning, helping take the game forward together in the region and beyond.

“I would like to dedicate this award to so many people who have contributed in their own way. The Snow Leopard fans are certainly one of them— they are part of the family. Without their support no club can succeed. The support and warmth they have given not only to me but the whole club is incredible. They drive us all on, I hope very soon we can hear them roar at TRC.” Robertson told after winning the Award.

The Snow Leopards recently added another golden chapter in history by winning the 123rd edition of the IFA Shield tournament in 2020.

"The sacrifices of my wife and family have allowed me to pursue my dream. My parents are also a huge part of my successful career. My mother passed away six months ago and my father passed away three weeks ago, just days after I was first notified of my Award. I’m sad that they were not here to celebrate with me," he added.

The 52-year-old played for clubs like Rangers and donned the Scotland colours during his illustrious career. He also coached clubs in Scotland and the USA and now he feels “attached” to the people of the Valley.

“I’m so proud to have been a part of an amazing story. When I arrived in Kashmir almost five years ago, I found it tough as it was a new experience but that soon changed as I was made to feel so welcome by everyone not only those involved at RKFC, but the general public when I walked down the streets. Now I feel so honoured and attached to the Kashmiri public, I feel so much appreciation for their continued support and feel I am working and wanting to do everything I can to give them a team to be proud of," he recalled.

Robertson lauded Mr. Sandeep Chattoo and his family for standing as the backbone of the club.

“I would like to thank Sandeep Chattoo and his family for all the support they have given me and their continued drive to keep the club moving forward. It's a total pleasure to be part of such a great club. No one could believe where we are today from where we started. So many people have contributed on and off the pitch to make the club a success and we aim to keep striving for even more success’’, he concluded.

Wednesday, June 9, 2021

Former state footballer Sigamani no more

Sigamani, 72, expired due to Covid-19 yesterday morning at a hospital near his house at OMBR Layout, Banaswadi, Bangalore. He was employed with Services and retired as a Subedar from MEG. 

Hailing from KGF, Sigamani represented Karnataka state in Santhosh Trophy at Calcutta in the year 1978 and the year after at Coimbatore, where Karnataka lost to Punjab in semis.  He was a regular left-out player for MEG, also, went on representing Indian Army against many international teams. 

Sigamani was coaching a team in Banaswadi that play in BDFA C division along with a school in Sishuvihar. He is survived by his wife, two sons, and a daughter. 

Monday, June 7, 2021

Sunil Chhetri brace hands India victory against Bangladesh

AIFF Media 

Bangladesh 0 Vs India 2 (Sunil Chhetri 79’, 90+2’)

India rode on a Sunil Chhetri brace to beat Bangladesh 2-0 in the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022, and AFC Asian Cup China 2023 preliminary joint round qualification round at the Jassim Bin Hamad Stadium, Doha.

Courtesy the result, India moved to six points from seven matches, while Bangladesh are at two points seven matches. India next play Afghanistan in their last group league match on June 15.

Sunil broke the deadlock in the 78th minute when he headed in Ashique Kuruniyan’s cross from the left. He then sealed the result by curling in a shot from long range in added time, to win the match 2-0 for the Blue Tigers.

Stimac made three changes from the side that took on Qatar in the last match. The Blue Tigers made a cautious start, playing it amongst themselves, searching for the gaps.

In the 2nd minute, Rakib Hossain was flashed the yellow for a tackle on Brandon Fernandes. Brandon tried to be in the thick of action in his effort to essay those passes, and find someone in the clear.

India earned their first corner in the 9th minute, but the first real chance came in the 15th minute when Brandon’s through ball played between the two central defenders found Manvir Singh in the clear inside the box.

With only the rival goalkeeper Anisur Rahaman to beat, Manvir was a bit shy to have a try, and delayed it that shade too long allowing the rival defence to regroup.

In the next minute, Suresh Singh got into the box but his centre was collected by a diving Anisur.

Bangladesh’s Rahmat Mia was shown the yellow card for his foul on Suresh in the 32nd minute.

Bangladesh had a close shave in the 35th minute when Chinglensana Singh’s header off a Brandon corner was cleared on the line by Riyadul Hasan.

Changing over, Mohammed Yasir came in for Udanta Singh, and Ashique Kuruniyan replaced Bipin in the 46th minute.

In the 56th minute, Sandesh did leap more than all to head Brandon’d corner but it didn’t pose any danger, and then two minutes later, Sunil received a pass form Brandon on the edge of the box and out Yasir to pull the trigger. Yasir delayed a bit, and the rival defence were able to thwart it off.

On the hour mark, India brought in their third substitute – Liston Colaco coming in for Manvir Singh.

Almost immediately, rival captain Jamal Bhuyan was flashed the yellow after Suresh had sped past him on the right flank. Off the resultant free-kick, Brandon did manage to find an unmarked Sunil Chhetri in the box but his header was off target.

Glan’s long-range effort won India a corner in the 73rd when it deflected off a rival defender over the goal-line. But India’s agony continued as Subhashish Bose, all unmarked, failed to guide his header into the goal – it sailed past the post.

A minute later Asahique was shown the yellow card for his foul on Riyadul.

India finally was able to break the deadlock, and it was none other than Sunil Chhetri, on the 79th minute, who connected with an Ashique cross from an acute angle to send the ball back across Bangladesh goalkeeper Anisur Rahman.

Bangladesh began to throw bodies forward in search of the equaliser, but were often thwarted by the Indian defence. Jamal Bhuyian went into the referee’s books a minute after Chhetri’s goal, for a foul on Brandon Fernandes.

Stimac made a couple of tactical changes in order to hold on to the lead in added time, as Pronay Halder and Adil Khan replaced Chinglensana Singh and Brandon Fernandes, respectively.

However, captain Sunil Chhetri sealed the three points for the Blue Tigers, as he collected a pass from the left by Suresh, outside the Bangladesh area, and curled it into the back of the net.

INDIA: Gurpreet Singh Sandhu; Chingensana Singh (Pronay Halder -- 90+1'), Sandesh Jhingan, Subhashish Bose; Udanta Singh (Mohammed Yasir – 46th), Suresh Singh, Glan Martins, Brandon Fernandes (Adil Khan -- 90+1'), Bipin Singh (Ashique Kuruniyan – 46th), Sunil Chhetri, Manvir Singh (Liston Colaco – 60th). 

Tuesday, June 1, 2021

FCBU’s Primus and Carr named in Trinidad & Tobago national squad for World Cup qualifiers

FCBU Media

FC Bengaluru United's Robert Primus and Daniel Carr have been named in Trinidad & Tobago’s 28-man squad for the upcoming World Cup Qualifiers. This comes on the back of strong performances by the duo in the recently concluded BDFA Super Division League 2020-21 in March, in which FC Bengaluru United (FCBU) emerged champions.

Center-back Primus has been an integral part of the FCBU set up since the I-league qualifiers in October 2020. He played a key role in the club’s triumphant journey in the BDFA Super Division League 2020-21, scoring the winner in the 62nd minute in the final league game that crowned FCBU champions. Striker Carr too shone with goalscoring abilities.

Richard Hood, Head Coach, FCBU who has worked closely with Primus and Carr was delighted with their selection. “Robert was with us when his initial call up to the national team came in March towards the end of the local league. It is a tremendous story for us to be a part of where he has made a return to the Soca Warriors after about 7 years. All credit to him for taking advantage of what FC Bengaluru United offer in terms of the training program and lifestyle. We are sure his contribution to his team's bid to qualify for the World Cup will be crucial."

The plan with Carr, says Hood, “always was to condition him for the second division league. His work ethic and dedication to get into peak shape is the primary reason for his call-up to the national team. We look forward to him leading from the front and getting his name on the scorecard.”

“Their selection is a great moment of pride for all of us at FCBU, “said Gaurav Manchanda, Owner, FC Bengaluru United. “Not only is it a reflection of Primus and Carr’s ability, it is also a great testimony to the growing potential and stature of FCBU. We are a club on the ascendancy and being part of our club has a tremendous positive impact on a player’s growth trajectory. 

Monday, May 31, 2021

Former state footballer Munimara no more

N Munimara, 73, former State and CIL footballer passed away yesterday, Sunday, May 30, 10 am in his residence at Munireddy Palya, Bangalore owing to a heart attack. 

Munimara first represented Karnataka state in Santhosh Trophy at Kerala 1973. He was a very popular half back/forward player in state as well as CIL. He was playing with some famous players Ulaganathan, Amjad Khan, Krishanaji Rao, Thayagaraj back then. 

Munimara was a hardworking midfielder who brought glory to Karnataka and CIL. He helped CIL to win the Stafford Challenge Cup and Bandodkor Gold Cup and went on playing in famous all India tournaments like Durand, DCM, Rovers, and Federation Cup.

Munimara was philanthropist and helped many poor people. He is survived by his wife and a Son and daughter. 

KSFA, BDFA, and the State Referee Committee condoled the sudden demise of the footballer.