AIFF is back to its old tricks to fool people and has played a cruel joke on the country.
The All India Football Federation played a cruel joke on the country
On Friday, the Indian Under-17 team, on an exposure trip to Europe, scored a 2-0 win over an Italian Under-17 side in a practice match in Arezzo, Italy, in preparation for the forthcoming FIFA Under-17 World Cup,to be hosted in six cities by India in October.
The victory was not over the Italian National Under-17 team as was made out by the AIFF on its website. (It’s not found now). They did not even mention the team’s name properly in the press release.
News of the victory was greeted with joy by many football fans. The team India beat on Friday was not the Italy Under-17 national team. It was an Under-17 team from Italy but not the National team which was playing the European Under-17 championships. Yet, the AIFF provided misleading information about the match.
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The team the Indians faced was Italy Lega Pro Under-17 Representative, a side comprising youth players from clubs in Lega Pro and Lega Pro 2, the third and fourth tiers of Italian football, respectively.
The official websites of Lega Pro and Lega Pro clubs Parma and Albinoleffe, all of whom carried stories on the match, revealed that the team playing India was indeed a representative side of the league.
That, however, didn’t stop the AIFF from continuing to spread false info that India had beaten the Italian Under-17 national team.
The AIFF website termed the win as ‘a historic moment for Indian football’ and ‘a brand new chapter in the Indian football history’.
But there was no mention of the match on the official website of the Italian Football Federation (FIGC).
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Here is the Italian squad for the match against India, with the names of the clubs the players represent:
Federico Brancolini (Modena), Edoardo Corvi (Parma), Francesco Micheli (Albinoleffe), Simone Della Morte (Lucchese), Davide Missaglia (Cremonese), Marco Ruggero (Padova), Antonio Vitale (Modena), Nicolo Maffini (Carrarese), Alessio Gianneschi Robur Siena, Antonio Marrone (Juve Stabia), Matteo Bertollo, Bassano Virtus, Michael Fibiano (Juve Stabia), Alberto Maroni (Mantova), Alessandro Ramello (Alessandria), Alessandro Galeandro (Albinoleffe), Davide Rosso (Padova), Davide Rodolfi (Albinoleffe), Alessandro Davitti (Modena). Coach: Daniele Arrigoni.
The head coach of the Italy Under-17 National team is Emiliano Bigica.
Bringing in substandard club sides for the Nehru Cup and calling them as the national teams of their respective countries was a tactic adopted by the AIFF often. It did not get away any even then.
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But the ease of communication and information availability at the click of a mouse has exposed the AIFF faster on this occasion.
More than enhancing their reputation, they have totally put a black mark on the Italian reputation by such blatant lies. Will they ever learn is the question.
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