Blue Tigers skipper Chhetri, who represented India at two Asian Cups in 2011 and 2019, said hosting the mega-event would be the “best gift” for fans of the game.
Getting the rights to organize the 2027 AFC Asian Cup would be “huge” for India, said Sunil Chhetri, one of the country’s greatest footballers.
The Indian Football Association (AIFF) announced its bid to host the 2027 AFC Asian Cup on Wednesday, creating a buzz.
Blue Tigers skipper Chhetri, who represented India at two Asian Cups in 2011 and 2019, said hosting the mega event would be the “best gift” for fans of the game.
“There is no greater honor and privilege than playing for your country and for our nation to host the 2027 AFC Asian Cup would be even greater. I think it will be the best gift for the fans and for everyone in the country, ”said Chhetri, as quoted by aiff.com.
Second top scorer in the world among active international players, Chhetri added: “We already had the FIFA U-17 World Cup in 2017 in India and it was a huge success and you can see the wonders of this tournament do. so good. We also have the next FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup in 2022 and I can’t wait for it.
“Getting the 2027 Asian Cup and getting the best of Asia to come and play in our country would be huge. I wish AIFF all the best and hope we get it.
National team goalkeeper Subrata Paul, who earned the nickname “Spiderman” for his fine performance at the 2011 Asian Cup, said the country is ready to host the tournament and become a “global destination. soccer”.
“I consider myself very lucky to represent my country and to play in big matches in front of our supporters. But nothing is bigger than hosting the Asian Cup.
“I have the feeling in recent years that our football infrastructure and culture have developed a lot and that we are ready to host the AFC Asian Cup. I have no doubt that our fans will make it memorable for everyone and make our nation a destination for world football, ”said Paul.
The country will host two major international tournaments in 2022 in the form of the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup and the AFC Asian Women’s Cup.
According to Blue Tigers goalkeeper Gurpreet Singh Sandhu, the organization of the Asian Cup will be a “massive” aid to sport in India.
Sandhu, who is the first Indian to play in the UEFA Europa League, said: “Our performances in recent years have steadily improved and hosting a big tournament like this will help us a lot.
“In 2017 we saw the FIFA U-17 World Cup take place in India and in 2022 the AFC Asian Women’s Cup and the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup will also be held. . Hosting the AFC Asian Cup in 2027 will be a big boost for us in India and will massively help the sport, ”he added.
Center-back Sandesh Jhingan, who earlier this year became the 27th footballer to receive the Arjuna Award, said the AFC Asian Cup at home would be a dream come true for all Indians.
“I saw the support we got for the 2019 AFC Asian Cup in the United Arab Emirates and I felt right at home with all the fans coming to support us. I can only imagine the noise and the buzz if we play the AFC Asian Cup 2027 in Kolkata.
“This is a dream for all Indians and I hope it will come true. The whole football fraternity in India will enjoy world class football in our own backyard. I can’t wait for it, ”Jhingan said.