New Delhi: India's sporting events hosting comes under severe criticism once again as national football coach Stephen Constantine hit out at the organisers of the SAFF Cup that was hosted last month.
Although India won the tourney, the facilities during the entire championship has been questioned and this brings a rousing question whether the nation will be able to host the FIFA U-17 World Cup in 2017 without controversies.
Even prior to the start of SAFF Cup, problems had aroused regarding the turf war, even before a ball had been kicked regarding usage of Greenfield stadium in Thiruvananthapuram with foreign teams being denied access to use the main venue.
The training pitch turf at the Lakshmibai National College of Physical Education, which was allotted for foreign teams to go ahead with their practice, was criticised by Afghanistan coach who feared his players may get injured.
Constantine's attack on the organisation of the tournament with lack of overall management does not come as a surprise. Blame games have started within the organisers of Kerala Football Association lashing out at SAFF and the AIFF.
With a major world tourney to take place in India in 2017, the reaction of the AIFF in getting everything right from hosting to the facilities provided to all teams will be interesting to watch. Apart from internal issues like the I-League, AIFF have to be wary of the backlash it can receive if the mega sporting event doesn't go well.
The Indian football scenario is facing a big crisis from its base itself. The I-League has been riddled with problems from monetary crisis, teams pulling out and unemployed players.
Kerala is set to organise the Nagjee International Club Tournament, which is being revived after 21 years. With U-23 clubs participating from South America and Europe, the organising of the tourney will be brought into light as the state will look to avoid another controversy.
India, who rank a dismal 163rd in the FIFA Rankings, will take part in the 2017 WC as hosts.