End of a career, start of a legacy—Bhutia to don national colours one last time

Zeenews Sports Bureau

New Delhi: It would be the end of an illustrious career but it will also mark the start of a legacy for India’s most popular footballer, Baichung Bhutia when he will don the national colours one last time to take on German giants Bayern Munich in his farewell exhibition match on Tuesday.

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Baichung Bhutia who is gearing up for his final hurrah is content with the current Indian squad and is happily retired.

“I hope best days come back for Indian football and I am very happily retiring.” Bhutia said during a press conference on Monday.

When asked whether the striker would be open to come out of retirement if the need arises, the Sikkimese Sniper answered in positive but at the same time wished that such a situation never arises.

“If there is a need tomorrow I would come but I don`t think that situation should come ever. The current members in the national squad are very good. I hope and pray that I am not called back for the national team.” he said.

Bhaichung retired from international football last year after playing for 16 years since 1995.

The Capital`s most high-profile football match, to be played at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium, will see a bevy of international stars such as Philipp Lahm, Arjen Robben, Bastian Schweinsteiger, Thomas Mueller and Mario Gomez in the Bayern Munich ranks.

The result of the match though is a foregone conclusion with Bayern bringing their first team after their week-long winter training camp in Doha. Bayern have won the Bundesliga 22 times and the UEFA Champions League four times.

Bhaichung admitted that there was no question of comparing the national team with Bayern Munich but said the match would be an opportunity for the Indian players to find out how much they need to improve.

"You cannot compare the Indian team with Bayern Munich which is as good as the German national side. But it`s an opportunity for the players to know how much they need to work on to take themselves to level of top international stars," he said.

"For me, it is just enjoying my last match and enjoying the moment. I feel honoured to play my farewell match against a top side like Bayern Munich," added Bhaichung.

With Agency Inputs