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  #1  
Old December 1, 2011, 06:32 PM
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Default SAFF Championship 2011


PRIZE THAT MATTERS: Footballers from seven of the participating countries pose with the trophy on the eve of the SAFF Championship in New Delhi on Thursday.


It is about good and weak teams, tactical and seminal football. It is also about fierce competition, as expounded by the coaches, with some banter thrown in to signify the spirit in which the SAFF Championship will be played at the Nehru Stadium here from Friday.

India is the defending champion and Maldives a strong contender. Pakistan is also fancying its chances. Sri Lanka says it is no pushover. Bangladesh loves its football. Nepal has launched an ambitious project — ‘Do well in SAFF'. Afghanistan is waiting to showcase its potential. Bhutan, the weakest on paper, promises it is not so.

Effectively, we have a gathering of teams all wanting to excel on a stage which most would dismiss as a mediocre football exhibition. It would be a travesty to think so. This is a tournament that brings some ambitious teams on the same plane. India, Afghanistan, Sri Lanka and Bhutan form Group ‘A' while the others make up Group ‘B'.

“I don't underestimate anybody,” Nepal coach Graham Paul Roberts put things in perspective. He should know, having played for Chelsea and Glasgow Rovers.

“I like to speak after the match…I am no astrologer. Only astrologer speaks before the match. We are here to play good football,” was a matter-of-fact Nicolai, the Bangladesh coach. He reached out to pick the trophy on display, moving it from in front of the Maldives coach. “Now it is nice,” he said poker-faced, running his hands over the trophy, leaving the house in splits.

Maldives has roped in Istvan Urbanyi, a Hungarian first-division player, as the coach. Urbanyi came off the most candid and a master at communication. He assessed the opponents deftly and placed his case strongly.

“We have huge pressure, from fans and media (back home). I have been with the team only five weeks but we are well prepared. The weather here is fine and the grass is good. I can't wish better. We respect all opponents and I know there won't be an easy game,' said Urbanyi, a pleasant hit with the audience.

PAKISTAN REALISTIC

Pakistan is realistic. Admitted captain Jaffer Khan, “Honestly, there is no pressure. In India it is like at home. Only weak players feel pressure. We have a new coach and he has picked young players but we are not weak.”

Bhutan coach Hiroaki Matsuyama and captain Nawang Dendup just repeated their well-rehearsed lines, “We will give our best. We will give our hundred per cent.”

Sri Lanka has its plans in place. “We have played a few local matches and travelled to Dubai as part of the preparation. It's been a happy journey thus far. We know India is strong but we are well prepared. Weather can be an issue for us but we have to face it,” observed coach D. Chandrasiri.

India, smarting under the 5-0 lashing from Zambia in a friendly the other night, hopes to keep the trophy. Coach Savio Mediera noted, “Ideally it would have been nice to go in with a win but there is a vast difference in the technical abilities between India and Zambia. We have to make the most of it.” With help from strikers Sunil Chetri and Jeje Lalpekhlua, India's quest for football renaissance continues!

Source


Group A -- Afghanistan India Sri Lanka Bhutan
Group B -- Bangladesh Maldives Pakistan Nepal

Friday 2nd
Bangladesh vs Pakistan 4:30am - 7:30am EST
Maldives vs Nepal 7:30am - 10:30am EST

Saturday 3rd
India vs Afghanistan 4:30am - 7:30am EST
Sri Lanka vs Bhutan 7:30am - 10:30am EST

Sunday 4th
Nepal vs Bangladesh 4:30am - 7:30am EST
Pakistan vs Maldives 7:30am - 10:30am EST

Monday 5th
Afghanistan vs Sri Lanka 4:30am - 7:30am EST
Bhutan vs India 7:30am - 10:30am EST

Tuesday 6th
Pakistan vs Nepal 4:30am - 7:30am EST
Maldives vs Bangladesh 7:30am - 10:30am EST

Wednesday 7th
India vs Afghanistan 4:30am - 7:30am EST
India vs Sri Lanka 7:30am - 10:30am EST

Friday 9th
Winner B vs Runner Up A 4:30am - 7:30am EST
Winnder A vs Runner-Up B 7:30am - 10:30am EST

Sunday 11th
Championship Final (Winner 13 vs Winner 14) 7:30am - 10:30am


YouTube Live
In a deal with World Sport Group and SAFF’s exclusive marketing and media partner, All the matches will be live on YouTube from 2 December to 11 December. The live matches will be accessible globally through SAFF Youtube Channel except in India, where they will be available on a delayed basis the following day.

USTREAM
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  #2  
Old December 1, 2011, 06:42 PM
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http://www.youtube.com/user/saffcham...?feature=watch

Subscribed to this channel. First match 0930 GMT
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  #3  
Old December 1, 2011, 08:48 PM
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Awesome MoC bhai! Bangladesh - India final?
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  #4  
Old December 1, 2011, 10:19 PM
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Yup! Bangladesh - India final for me ATMR!

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  #5  
Old December 2, 2011, 12:01 AM
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will be tough for us to reach to the final. Maldives , India , Afganistan, Nepal are very strong sides. Pakistan also seems to be very good with their 5-6 players with experience of playing in England domestic Football. Best of luck to the BD team
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  #6  
Old December 2, 2011, 12:05 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rifat @cri
will be tough for us to reach to the final. Maldives , India , Afganistan, Nepal are very strong sides. Pakistan also seems to be very good with their 5-6 players with experience of playing in England domestic Football. Best of luck to the BD team
Can't believe I had to see this day. Remember back in the early 90s victories against teams like Maldives and Nepal was a given. Anything less than a 5-0 used to be quite unsatisfactory! Sigh!!

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  #7  
Old December 2, 2011, 12:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shehwar
Can't believe I had to see this day. Remember back in the early 90s victories against teams like Maldives and Nepal was a given. Anything less than a 5-0 used to be quite unsatisfactory! Sigh!!

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Yes . I heard those days we used to beat Maldives 7-0 , 8-0 . But Now things have really changed. I think Maldives was the champion of Saff 2-3 years ago beating India .
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  #8  
Old December 2, 2011, 12:09 AM
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Bangladesh vs Pakistan will be live on Ten Action at 3.30 BDT
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  #9  
Old December 2, 2011, 04:07 AM
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Awesome Work from management to make a deal with Youtube and Ustream. Thanks Shehwar and Moc bhai for posting the links.

Hope Bangladesh can have a flying start.
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  #10  
Old December 2, 2011, 04:44 AM
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Come on!! I like the nice short passes they are putting together ...

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  #11  
Old December 2, 2011, 04:46 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shehwar
Come on!! I like the nice short passes they are putting together ...

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Yes, the short passes do look catchy.
It looks very clean.
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  #12  
Old December 2, 2011, 04:44 AM
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British Pakistani are playing well again home grown Bangladeshi
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  #13  
Old December 2, 2011, 04:50 AM
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Pakistan's GK looks pretty good.
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  #14  
Old December 2, 2011, 04:51 AM
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What a dumb keeping by the Bangladeshi goalie !!
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  #15  
Old December 2, 2011, 04:52 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rabz
What a dumb keeping by the Bangladeshi goalie !!
agreed. should have kicked it away
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  #16  
Old December 2, 2011, 04:52 AM
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Lolz..even more dumber free kick by the pakistani player.
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  #17  
Old December 2, 2011, 04:53 AM
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below par performance from BD. disappointing
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  #18  
Old December 2, 2011, 04:58 AM
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what a miss by pakistani
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  #19  
Old December 2, 2011, 04:58 AM
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what a poor goalie of BD.
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  #20  
Old December 2, 2011, 04:58 AM
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Oh !! that was a sitter they missed !!!
We escaped lucky !!
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  #21  
Old December 2, 2011, 04:58 AM
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Phew!!! That was a miracle that we didn't concede!!

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  #22  
Old December 2, 2011, 04:59 AM
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Is it BD under 19 vs Pak National team ?
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  #23  
Old December 2, 2011, 04:59 AM
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Stupid Goal keeper
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  #24  
Old December 2, 2011, 05:01 AM
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Looking at the game, I would be happy if we can get a point !
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  #25  
Old December 2, 2011, 05:03 AM
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eto modon ken ei goalie ta ???
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