Indian football gets a canine twist

Perhaps the only highlight of last evening’s Asian Cup qualifying match in Bangalore was the mangy mutt who rushed to provide succour to the losing Indian side.

Play was held up for some minutes as the friendly canine gambolled around the field giving some respite to our beleaguered football players.

But the dog offered its four paws in vain. Bob Houghton’s boys put up a brave front, especially in the second half, but Ryuji Bando struck twice to give holders Japan a well-deserved 3-0 victory.

Bhaichung Bhutia had even more reason to be unhappy. On Wednesday, the Indian Football Association suspended him for the remaining three matches of the Kolkata Premier League. The former skipper is also being fined Rs 50,000. His crime – showing dissent during a domestic league match in September.

Moral: Every dog has its day but Indian football’s only canine fan would be better off watching cricket.

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