"We were robbed.... have to start from zero": AIFF Acting Secretary General Satyanarayan fumes over Qatar's controversial goal against India

By ANI | Published: June 12, 2024 10:00 PM2024-06-12T22:00:43+5:302024-06-12T22:05:06+5:30

By Vivek Prabhakar Singh New Delhi [India], June 12 : All India Football Federation (AIFF) acting Secretary General M ...

"We were robbed.... have to start from zero": AIFF Acting Secretary General Satyanarayan fumes over Qatar's controversial goal against India | "We were robbed.... have to start from zero": AIFF Acting Secretary General Satyanarayan fumes over Qatar's controversial goal against India

"We were robbed.... have to start from zero": AIFF Acting Secretary General Satyanarayan fumes over Qatar's controversial goal against India

By Vivek Prabhakar Singh

New Delhi [India], June 12 : All India Football Federation (AIFF) acting Secretary General M Satyanarayan stated that the Indian team was "robbed" of a victory after the Blue Tigers suffered a defeat against Qatar because of the controversial decision that was taken during their 2-1 loss in the FIFA 2026 and AFC Asian Cup 2027 Preliminary Joint Qualification Round 2.

On Tuesday in Doha, India led the game till the 72nd minute of the game but Qatar levelled the game following a controversial equaliser which put India's hopes of reaching Round 3 in jeopardy.

Yousef Aymen found the back of the net after the ball had gone out of play. They scored another goal in the final minutes of the game to clinch a 2-1 victory and end Igor Stimac's side run in the Qualification race.

"We were done in. It was very very sad, heartbreaking especially when the team after a long time played really well. They looked like scoring goals. They scored a goal and it was just 20 minutes left to pull off a win against the top sides in Asia. It is a different thing that they did not field their top players. But Qatar is Qatar. We were just 20 minutes away from creating history. To get into the third round would have been a huge statement for the football federation and football team. It is sad but yes it happened," Satyanarayan told ANI.

The goal, validated by South Korean referee Kim Woo-Sung, was disputed as the ball had exited play before the goal was scored. India lost the match 1-2, ending their World Cup qualifying hopes.

"Whom do we blame? The two players who connived to pull through the ball from outside the line and push it into the net or whether you blame the referee who perhaps did not get a good sight of what exactly happened. So, but the end of it, it is Indian football which has suffered because we had really come so close to almost creating history. So, that's the sad part of it. We do not get another chance to be in this position again. We have to start from zero," he added.

On Wednesday, AIFF released a statement to express their dissatisfaction over the entire incident. The statement stated that it was a "huge disappointment for the entire Indian football fraternity."

Satyanarayan revealed that a complaint was also filed a complaint to the match commissioner, the FIFA World Cup Qualifiers Committee with the AFC Referees Committee as well.

"We have filed a complaint last night itself. The president Kalyan Chaubey discussed and immediately we filed a complaint to the match commissioner, the FIFA World Cup Qualifiers committee with the AFC Referees Committee. We have already done it but we have to wait and see we all have to. We know what FIFA rules are but it is sad that something like this happening in such a crucial qualifier. For Qatar it's fine, they have already qualified. For us it is and it has left thousands of fans. Every time you see the replay of the incident. It hurts but I mean it is sad," Satyanarayan stated.

After Qatar equalised in the 73rd minute, the Indian players waited for the referee to blow the whistle as the ball had gone out. But the whistle never came from the referee, and Indian players started to protest.

In the absence of the Video Assistant Referee, the referee consulted with the assistant referee. The goal was given but the replay clearly showed that the ball had gone out of play.

"We do not know because you know how it is the referee decides that once it is done then it is done. I mean, you can't change decisions but let us see we have put in the letter what exactly has happened and how it feels. For a country like ours to get into the third round of World Cup Qualifiers, it is big. We have lost the chance as we were winning at that time. After that, the players' heads dropped. It changed a lot of things for us because this team did do well the way they played. They were brave and attacked in their particular. Chhetri was missing but still boys knew what was at stake. But finally, we were undone by a decision. The sad part is the team that qualified first. Against them, we had taken four points out of six. But we will have to move it and see the positive sides of it. We have done what we have to do. Let's wait and see," Satyanarayan noted.

Satyanarayan felt that there was no need to blame the referees. He stated that things would have been different if VAR had been present during the game.

"That's a totally a subject like all the other matches. We might not have got the address done. They have a decision, but according to them, from the third round onwards. VAR would have been there. There is no need to blame the referees. But had VAR been there then clearly the goal would have been disallowed, but we have been undone. We feel robbed, and it is sad because everyone had put in a lot of effort in the campaign and for us being 121 and playing against Qatar, we almost pulled it off. So, we have to get back and start building once again. Let's see anyway the complaint is already there. We will see, legally what we can do about it. But by experience, we know that referees' decisions are never overturned. It was just maybe fate against us," he concluded.

Disclaimer: This post has been auto-published from an agency feed without any modifications to the text and has not been reviewed by an editor

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