Home / Sports / Football News /  Bhaichung Bhutia lauds FIFA's call to lift AIFF ban, talks about changing system

Former Indian captain and football legend Bhaichung Bhutia on Saturday welcomed the decision of the world football governing body FIFA after it lifted the ban imposed on the All India Football Federation (AIFF).

The ban was lifted on Friday after the apex court terminated the mandate of the Committee of Administrators (CoA) constituted by it in May this year. The decision of FIFA has cleared the decks for India to host the FIFA Women's U-17 World Cup which to scheduled for October.

"It's a wonderful news. I welcome the decision of the FIFA to lift the suspension on AIFF. It's a win for Indian football, nothing else," Bhutia told PTI.

"I am extremely happy for our young players as they will now be able to play against the best in the business in their age group in the Women's U-17 World Cup."


FIFA had suspended the AIFF on August 15 for "undue influence from third parties" and had said the U-17 Women's World Cup "cannot currently be held in India as planned."

The AIFF was suspended for the first time in 82 years and the suspension went for 11 days till the decision of the Supreme Court on Monday which dissolved the CoA. The Supreme Court took a wider view of the situation and decided in the favor of dissolution of the committee it didn't want to block the FIFA U-17 Women's World Cup.

Bhaichung Bhutia also plans to contest for the post of AIFF President and is expected to file nomination papers on 2 September. He asserted the need to bring changes in the administration of football in India to avoid any such action in the future.

"It's also the time to learn lessons and bring in changes and reforms in the Indian football administration. We need changes in the system," said former captain Bhutia who was the first Indian to have played 100 matches for the country before his retirement in 2011.

"I feel Indian football can reach new heights if we have the right system, right personnel in the administration. I am of the opinion that our age group as well as senior teams can reach the world cups on merit in the coming years."

Bhutia, was honored with the AFC Hall of Fame Award in 2019 for his contributions to Indian football during his 16-year stellar career. He will face former Indian goalkeeper Kalyan Chaubey for the position of AIFF president.


With Inputs from PTI.

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