Football is finally being taken seriously in India. Parents are actually seriously considering enrolling their children in sports academies. And the youth of India is pursuing Football and other sports as actual career choices instead of ‘Doctor’ or ‘Engineer’. ‘Getting the Gold at the Olympics’ is now a real goal for youngsters after Neeraj Chopra showed how its done. Among football clubs in India, Bengaluru FC is one name that pops up time and time again. Unlike other clubs in India, there’s a whole lot of reasons why BFC should be celebrated as one of the model football clubs of India. We have 5 reasons that will really get you thinking:
1. The only club to play the AFC cup final from India:
BFC created history by becoming the first Indian club to make it to the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Final from India. They were also the third ever Indian club to make it to the semi-finals.
2. Fan Culture:
There’s some ecstatic spirit in the air when it comes to the BFC Fan Culture. There’s a familial feeling among fans and the culture is one that’s very empowering. The excitement among fans at The Fortress a.k.a the Kanteerava Stadium at Bengaluru is one that’s no less than a celebration and a real treat to experience.
3. The Captain – Sunil Chhetri:
Sunil Chhetri is one of the finest captains of Bengaluru FC and you could say that he’s the lifeblood of every game. A star striker, as long as Chhetri keeps scoring goal after goal, all’s well for the Blues.
4. The Relationship between the Owners and Fans:
The manner in which Parth Jindal, Bengaluru FC Owner is a true model of what the culture should be like between the team and fans in any club. He actually sits among the fans during key matches and there’s even a special picture of him with fans at West Block Blues.
5. Inspire Institute of Sport:
Inspire is a JSW Initiative for sports development in India at Bellary. Bengaluru FC Academy is one of the few and probably the only club in India that has set up a dedicated sports school exclusively for kids who want to play football professionally. Neeraj Chopra, the man who made it big at the Olympics is actually a product of the Inspire Academy. Pretty cool, right?
6. Community Programs:
Bengaluru FC hosts a number of community programs. You can check out their social pages to get a better idea. Just to give you a hint, one of their community development initiatives was to organize a football tournament in association with Reliance Foundation and Bengaluru FC Soccer Schools. One such tournament was conducted in Murphy Town in 2022. Check out the video below:
7. 2023 – Longest winning streak:
Bengaluru FC reached the final of ISL (Indian Super League) by climbing from the bottom to the top of the ladder. Despite rivalry from Kerala, they managed to maintain their longest winning streak in 2023. They haven’t lost a single match this year even though in 2022, they were almost at the bottom of the table. Suddenly, the tables turned and they reached the Finals of ISL 2023. Unfortunately, they lost in the finals against ATK Mohun Bagan during the penalty shoot.