Contribution of international football players in Indian football!
Hiring footballers from foreign countries is an age-old practice for the Indian football clubs in India. Every year, the reputed football clubs based in different parts of the country sign players who mostly come from Nigeria and Brazil. East Bengal and Mohunbagan, the two most reputed football clubs of Kolkata are among the major hirers of international footballers.
Over the years, skilled and talented international footballers have come to play for Indian football clubs and have entertained the football lovers of the country for long. The list of such footballers is quite long but same names that will be remembered by the club football lovers of the country forever are Cheema Okeri, Omolo, Douglas D'Souza and Hous Ramirez Baretto. Though Cheema has retired from club football for quite sometime and is now concentrating on coaching, in his golden days, he used to be the biggest crowd puller. The extraordinary talents of the international footballers have always helped them switch over from one club to another. The Indian football clubs always get engaged in tough competition among themselves for snatching performing foreign footballers as they aim at trophies and championships.
The contribution of international footballers to the Indian football clubs is undeniable. There are several clubs that have owned championships and leagues depending on the performance of their international players. It is due to their skills and talents that standard of Indian football clubs has gone up significantly. But their skills do not come in use of the national football team as international players are not allowed to play there. That's the reason behind the noticeable difference between the standard of Indian national football and club football.
Though in the recent times the national football team has shown improved performance in international tournaments, the football lovers of the country are still not very optimistic about it. Performing well at club level is good but perhaps it's time for the Indian Football Academy (IFA) to concentrate on making the national team strong and for that it needs to pick up talented national players.