Football will be remembered for many things in 2022, from the World Cup being held in winter to Lionel Messi finally winning the trophy. Although India did not take part in this perennial event, there was sufficient drama in the year 2022 to see a great deal of highs and also lows in Indian football. And Indian football has witnessed a lot of turmoil this year, from facing a FIFA ban to qualifying for the Asian Cup for the first time in a row. With that in mind, we take a look at the top 10 events that will happen to Indian football in 2022.
The 2022 AFC Women’s Asian Cup home game is a no-go
India is hosting a major tournament in 2022, the AFC Women’s Asian Cup, for the first time since 1979. The tournament was held between January 20 and February 6, 2022 and was a great success. Even though the tournament was held in the midst of a COVID-19 pandemic, the organizers successfully implemented a biosafety bubble and conducted the tournament within the appropriate COVID protocols.
This was despite best efforts to contain the COVID attack on the tournament. India as the hosts had to withdraw after just one match. It was a heartbreaking moment as the excitement of hosting this coveted continental tournament was reduced by the forced withdrawal.
Indian men’s team qualified for the Asian Cup 2023
The way the Indian team played in the qualifiers was very commendable as India won all the matches. The men’s team qualified for the AFC Asian Cup 2023 by finishing initially in their group with wins over Hong Kong, Afghanistan and Cambodia. For the first time in its football history, the country has qualified for this prestigious tournament consecutively, having participated in the 2019 edition. Regardless of the outcome of the Asian Cup, the feat of qualifying for back-to-back continental elite tournaments is in itself a historic achievement for the country.
After this, we saw some interesting club football in action. Under the management of Owen Coyle, Jamshedpur FC won the ISL Shield for the 2021-22 season. Hyderabad FC defeated Kerala Blasters in front of a jam-packed Fatorda Arena to win the ISL 2021-22 final.
Mumbai City FC ending up 2nd in the 2022 AFC Champions League
Another positive gain was Mumbai City FC’s performance in the AFC Champions League. Not only did Mumbai City become the first Indian club to win a match in the coveted Continental Championship, but they also finished second in their group by winning two matches and drawing one, ahead of clubs from the Gulf States.
Meanwhile, ATK Mohun Bagan made a big return to qualify from their AFC Cup group. But however, they were beat by Malaysian club Kuala Lumpur. While many expected winning a match to be a huge achievement for the team, Mumbai City’s players had a different idea. They showed that Indian clubs can also do well at the continental level. Their performance will surely inspire other Indian clubs to enter the championship and make their mark in the league in a similar way.
One of the most talked about things about Indian football in 2022 is the suspension imposed by FIFA on the country’s football governing body, the AIFF. FIFA suspended Indian football on August 15, 2022, citing third-party intervention.
Although Indian football looked very bleak after the suspension, Indian football stakeholders responded positively to address the crisis. The Federal Ministry of Sports and Youth Affairs played an active role in this regard. This prompted FIFA to lift the ban on August 26, 2022, just a week and a half after the suspension. India successfully organized the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup. The girls made history by playing in the tournament, which gave them a lot of exposure.
4 Indian women’s footballers sign with top overseas clubs
Indian women’s football in 2022 has actually taken a significant jump forward as 4 Indian women’s footballers have actually signed with abroad clubs to play in their top organizations. The players involved overseas are Grace Dangmei (Uzbekistan), Manisha Kalyan (Cyprus), Jyoti Chauhan (Croatia) as well as Soumya Guguloth (Croatia). This is a watershed moment for the nation’s women’s football team, as it is the first time many Indians have actually signed for top foreign clubs in a single year.
Regardless of the stunning elimination from the 2022 Women’s Championship in South Africa, the signing of gamers to international clubs gave a twinkle of hope for the country’s football in general. In the future, youngsters of every gender will certainly be inspired by the accomplishments of these players and aim to duplicate their accomplishments.
SAFF U-18 Women’s Championship success on home turf
India missed out on out on keeping its perfect record of winning the SAFF Women’s Championship after shedding in the 2022 edition, the young people provided some relief to the nation by winning the U-18 tournament. This is the very first time India has actually been the champ of the occasion, in the third version of the competition.
It was likewise the first time that India organized the tournament. With this win, India is anticipated to dominate the competition in the next suits in a nationwide dominated senior layout.
Winning the 2022 SAFF U-20 Championship
Indian football had one more victorious year as it won the 2022 SAFF U-20 Championship. India additionally won as well as held the event, similar to the young people women’s team. This was India’s 2nd title in the 4th version of the tournament. The event saw the development of players like Gurkirat Singh and also Himanshu Janghera, that have actually currently started their club football trip in the ISL.
The win revealed that India is a dominant footballing nation in the SAFF, also in age-based competitors. While the senior group will be joining the forthcoming Asian Cup, followers can hope that these successful children will certainly maintain their dream of playing on the planet Cup active in the days ahead.
2023 AFC U-17 Asian Cup Qualifying Event
One more team of Indian youngsters made the nation proud in 2022 as India qualified for the 2023 Asian Cup U-17 event. In the last suit versus two-time U-17 Asian Cup champs Saudi Arabia, India placed up a perky performance regardless of shedding the match 2-1.
The children will certainly be playing against the large young boys of Asia in the coming year. With the likes of Japan, Korea, Iran and also Qatar all on the listing, the possibility looks really interesting and the similarity Thanglalsoun Gangte and also Vanlalpeka Guite can sign up an excellent appearance on a big system and make the nation proud.
Decision on promo of I-League champions to ISL
2022 experienced a watershed year for Indian club football as the AIFF made a decision to introduce promo in the Indian league system. This choice came as a relief to many of the clubs taking part in the I-League, as if they had the ability to win the league this season, they would have the opportunity to play in the ISL without paying any association cost. Nevertheless, these clubs should fulfill the Premier League’s licensing criteria in order to be eligible to participate in the ISL.
The decision to advertise the I-League victors to the ISL will open up the last, which has actually been a shut league considering that its beginning in 2014. This will most definitely profit Indian football as promo and transfer is the norm in club football all over the world. Following this decision, we can expect the ISL to introduce a transfer system starting from the 2024-25 period.
Modifications in the AIFF management after 13 years
One of the significant adjustments in Indian football in 2022 is the change in the AIFF. Former AIFF head of state Praful Patel has actually hung on to the blog post for the past 13 years. Patel also held on to the blog post after his term ran out in 2020. Because of this, the Indian Supreme Court expelled him for breaching the National Sports Code (which states that no one can hold a sports setting for more than 12 years or three terms of four years) and designated an administrative board, resulting in the suspension of FIFA.
Kalyan Chaubey took over as Head of state, NA Haris as Vice Head Of State and Kipa Ajay as AIFF’s Treasurer. We wish to see exactly how this monitoring will prepare for the days ahead as well as take Indian football to the next degree.
India Domestic and International Football League 2023
With 2022 coming to an end, we hope to see a brand-new dawn for Indian football in 2023. However, before that, let’s take a look at all the national and international schedules for Indian football in 2023.
|Indian Super League||The Indian Premier League 2022-23 period is currently well underway. Mumbai City FC, Hyderabad FC as well as ATK Mohun Bagan look to be the leaders until now. The 9th version of ISL will end in March. The 10th edition will start in the second/third week of October.|
|I-League||Similar to the ISL, the I-League for the 2022-23 period is currently underway. Sreenidi Deccan, RG Punjab and Actual Kashmir are giving defending champs Gokulam Kerala a hard battle. The 16th version of the I-League will end in March as well as the 17th version is likely to begin in October/November.|
|Indian Super Cup||The Indian Super Cup will be back in four years. The tournament will begin as soon as the continuous ISL and I-League periods are over. The tentative date is the first week of April.|
|Indian Women’s League||After a one-season hiatus, the Indian Women’s League lastly returned previously this year. It is anticipated that India’s premier residential women’s club football tournament will certainly likewise be kept in the coming year. No days have been set, if the AIFF makes a decision to follow last year’s timetable, the competition will be held in April-May.|
|AFC Cup 2022-23||Starting with the upcoming period, the AFC has determined to comply with the fall-spring timetable. The qualifying matches for the 2022-23 AFC Cup season will certainly start in the very first week of August. 2 Indian teams will take part in this competitors.|
|AFC Asian Champions League 2022-23||Comparable to the AFC Cup, the AFC will use a various routine for the ACL starting following season. The AFC Asian Champions League qualifiers for the 2022-23 season will begin in the 2nd week of August. An Indian club will join this competition for Asia’s leading clubs.|
|SAFF Championship 2023||The 14th SAFF Champion may be held in 2023. The host country is not yet verified. The tentative date for the champion is September 2023.|
|AFC Asian Cup 2023||For the very first time in several years, India has received back-to-back Asian Cup events. The tournament was prepared to be held in China from June 16 to July 16. China chose to withdraw its hosting civil liberties and also Qatar ended up being the new host country. Now, due to the extremely heat wave temperature levels in the Gulf area, Qatar is most likely to host the competition in early 2024.|
|FIFA World Cup 2026 and AFC Asian Cup 2027 Joint Qualifiers||FIFA has chosen to increase the World Cup to 48 teams, starting with the following FIFA World Cup 2026, which will be kept in the USA, Canada as well as Mexico. AFC will certainly have 8 straight qualifiers for the tournament. The Asian qualifiers will all start on October 12, 2023. India has actually currently certified for the second round as well as will start their trip in November 2023. This will also act as a qualifier for the 2027 Asian Cup.|
|International Friendlies||The Indian group has played a number of friendlies in 2022 as well as is expected to do the very same in 2023. So far, AIFF has not revealed any worldwide friendlies.|
AIFF has actually also reactivated the young people league from this period as well as will certainly continue with Santosh Trophy in the coming year. Altogether, we can claim that Indian football will have an extensive schedule in 2023. India finishes 2022 at 106th in the men’s FIFA positions and also 61st in the women’s FIFA rankings. It will interest see where India is at this moment next year.