Indian and Afghanistan footballers were involved in scuffles with each other after the former registered a hard-fought 2-1 win in the AFC Asian Cup Qualifiers at the VYBK Stadium in Kolkata on June 12.
The Indian team won the match and registered three crucial points to move into second place of Asian Cup Qualifiers Group D. Indian captain Sunil Chhetri opened the scoring with a free-kick in the 85th minute to almost ensure his side a win.
However, Afghanistan levelled up from a Zubayr Amiri free header two minutes from full-time before Sahal Abdul Samad’s prolific strike in the 90th minute sealed the game for the hosts.
Losing the game in such a fashion, the visiting players expressed their frustrations against India. Three Afghanistani and two Indian players can be initially seen pushing and shoving each other before the brawl escalates.
Indian goalkeeper Gurpreet Singh came in and tried to pacify players from both sides before he too was pushed by the players from the visiting team. In fact, a player was seen smacking Sandhu in the face while other Afghanistan players rushed from their dugout to get involved in the fight.
This further escalated the fight, and soon AFC officials were rushed to the ground. The players were seen pulling each other’s shirts while even fist blows were traded before the matter was pacified. It is yet unknown why this ugly scene broke out. The organising committee of the Asian Cup Qualifiers have remained tight-lipped about the incident.
According to reports, there was a problem amongst the fans as well. A group of visiting fans were seen having an argument with the Indian spectators, after which one Indian supporter was reportedly ousted from the stadium by security personnel.
Igor Stimac’s India are currently placed second in Group D, tied on six points with Hong Kong in the AFC Asian Cup Qualifiers. The two teams are set to face each other in the summit clash to determine who directly qualifies for the 2023 continental showpiece event.
2023 Asian Cup Qualification: Group D
|#||Team||Matches played||Goal difference||Points|