Bhaichung Bhutia appointed AIFF technical committee chief

Former India captain Bhaichung Bhutia has been appointed as the chairman of the All India Football Federation’s technical committee, marking his foray into football administration.

Bhutia retired from international football in 2011 following the national team’s dismal showing at the Asia Cup in Doha, where India failed to win a single match. He has been the torchbearer of Indian football during a career spanning 16 years.

“The decision (to appoint Bhutia) was taken by president Praful Patel,” AIFF vice-president Subrata Dutta said.

The 36-year-old’s appointment had been finalised at the last executive committee meeting of the AIFF, and he will replace former India international Mohammad Habib.

The out-going technical committee consists of former international players Habib, Inder Singh and Pradip Chowdhury.

Bhutia has scored a record 42 goals in 107 appearances for the Blue Tigers. He passed on the mantle to current skipper Sunil Chhetri, who is just two strikes behind Bhutia.

Under his captaincy, India won the SAFF Championship three times, the Nehru Cup twice, the LG Cup, and the AFC Challenge Cup in 2008, which helped the team qualify for the 2011 Asian Cup after 24 years.

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