If Indian Football captain Sunil Chhetri was born in another country and had scored over 100 goals, he would be mentioned in the media a gazillion times, earned a fortune by being brought one of the various European clubs and experts and alike would have reiterated that his team had a chance in the World Cup.
Instead he has to be content to be playing for India, who on the verge of their rankings is not eligible for football world cups, play second fiddle to a country obsessed with Cricket and where its citizens and media during the football world cups eulogize Argentina, Brazil, Messi, Ronaldo. He does play for Bengaluru FC in the Indian Super League but even this tournament all of 4 years old, does not find a mention in the same breath as European and South American leagues by our own media. Chhetri had to literally plead through a video message to the people to come and watch the football team play this tournament which had by default been overshadowed by the Football World Cup.
The Indian Football team convincingly won the Intercontinental cup which for its being telecast was not even worth a mention by electronic and print media, and who instead extolled Nadal for winning his 11th French Open on the first page and Indian teams' win got a paragraph on the last page for the sake of it. The look of the jersey of the Indian team is least to say unimpressive. No names are printed on the back of the shirts, making it difficult for anyone watching to recognize names except for Chhetri who has been there for decades. The fact that opponents of the Indian Football team in various tournaments they play do not raise an eyebrow and are in the same boat make it even more difficult.
Even the Afghanistan and Bangladesh tournament, countries dominated by one sport got a mention for its 'close encounters'. It is not about glorifying the sport or its players but rather giving it the respect and as far as Indian Football is concerned it gets a raw deal and the footballers are treated as second class citizens and if we had the power we would adopt the likes of Messi and Ronaldo and the rest.