TODAY -

For the love of football

Ningthoujam Rameshchandra *

Final Match : 1st RKFD Sangai Trophy Veteran Football Championship at Khuman Lampak :: June 04 2017
1st RKFD Sangai Trophy Veteran Football Championship at Khuman Lampak on June 04 2017 :: Pix - Shankar Khangembam



Since FOOTBALL was introduced to the people of Manipur during the fag end of the nineteenth century (by the colonial British), there is no dearth of football fan and football lover/players in Manipur. Many footballers from this hinterland have achieved their goals of becoming successful national as well as international football players who have made football as their career.

Mention may be made here that the NEROCA FC which was formed in 1965 as a local club [1] (and that has recently focussed into professionalization of football) has created a history in the annals of Manipur football to become the first club to qualify for India's top division – the I-League. That too, undefeated in the entire 2nd division home-away league matches that made them an invisible team – the champions of I-league II-division.

This turn of events has made the people of Manipur even crazier about football, and this particular event will pull more crowds to witness this beautiful game for sure. Many local clubs may follow suit of NEROCA FC in the near future too.

There is no concrete evidence found on the website of the All Manipur Football Association (AMFA) (that hardly update or never care to update) or District Sports Associations (DSA), regarding the numbers of football clubs that has affiliation with them, but there can be more than one thousand local football clubs (irrespective of their affiliation) whose main focus is football.

Likewise, the Sainik School Imphal Old Boys Football Club popularly known as SFC is one among many football clubs that was formed very recently (not even a year old). This club was particularly formed by the alumni of the Sainik School Imphal, who believes in brotherhood, where football is used as a means to spread peace and harmony at every nook and corners of the north-east India, or even farther/wider in the near future.

So far, SFC has taken part in many local tournaments and their popularity gains momentum in and around Manipur. In fact, this club is a mosaic of all the ethnic communities in Manipur or you may say north-east India. Because this club has many fans from Arunachal Pradesh, Mizoram, Nagaland, Tripura, and even from Bhutan who are alumni of Sainik School Imphal. But what strike the most to me is their accidental approach towards Manipur's fragile ethnic structure and its elusive peace, albeit this club was formed on an apolitical line.

It is not an uncommon scene of today to witness most of the local clubs playing football for the love of this beautiful game, but SFC's approach towards football is much more beyond the love of this game. In fact, no other local (football) clubs might have never thought of playing a friendly match at far corner and remote areas of Manipur.

But SFC does. This club does not have a benevolent funding or Good Samaritan but put an effort to run this club from their pocket money. They had managed to organise many football friendlies in and around Imphal Valley, but what commendable thing about this club is that they have the guts to have football friendlies even with the clubs from Ukhrul, or with some clubs at Chandel District, Senapati District and so on [2].

This is the reason why I find noteworthy to say that the approach of this club's is beyond the love for football, as this club's approach is very much toward spreading brotherhood, peace and harmony in the already peace hungry hinterland like Manipur.

SFC has not achieved much in terms of trophy, (with all their ambition of becoming a professional football club which are only in natal stage), nevertheless it has certainly achieved something in terms of winning hearts of many people, particularly at the hill districts of Manipur.

It was the organizer – Chandel Football Friends (CFF), who had organised a football friendly with SFC– the Connecting Cup-2017 on the theme of 'connecting people through football', who expressed their gratitude towards SFC saying that, "this is more than just a football game, but a day to remember for many of the people in Chandel....".

Perhaps, the organiser must have said this because they see a sight of positive peace not far and smell the fragrance of brotherhood in an ethnically disturbed state like Manipur, or perhaps, they are delighted to have some former international as well as national football players like Mr. Mutum Bijen Singh (former Indian football captain), Mr. Thangjam Saran Singh (Midfielder of the year 2017, NEROCA FC), Mr. Leishangthem Raman (former Pune FC player), and so on, who are also happen to be the alumni of Sainik School Imphal.

Whatever the case may be, SFC has done a great job to connect people through football, irrespective of caste, creed, hill or valley in and around Manipur. Let many other local clubs of Manipur follow the suit of this club and its approach to bring peace and harmony in this region. Let SFC shine in their future endeavours. Lets football!

References:

[1] Most of the Sports/Football clubs in Manipur are born out of the idea of ''Civil Society" that focus on the idea of vigilantism and advocacy, and football or other sports become a part of it. While, NEROCA FC is the only Clubs in Manipur that functions as a professional football club so far.

[2] Hill-valley divide in Manipur, either emotionally or ideologically perhaps due to religion or economic imbalance, is almost tangible


* Ningthoujam Rameshchandra wrote this article for e-pao.net
Ningthoujam Rameshchandra is an ICSSR Post Doctoral Research Fellow at Sikkim University. He has played up to National level football tournament. He has also played in State Level football tournaments including, Manipur State League with USA-Khurai, CC-Meet with Citizens Club – Soibam Leikei and so on
The writer can be contacted at rameshningthoujam(AT)gmail(DOT)com
This article was posted on June 13, 2017.


* Comments posted by users in this discussion thread and other parts of this site are opinions of the individuals posting them (whose user ID is displayed alongside) and not the views of e-pao.net. We strongly recommend that users exercise responsibility, sensitivity and caution over language while writing your opinions which will be seen and read by other users. Please read a complete Guideline on using comments on this website.




LATEST IN E-PAO.NET
  • Women's Polo Tournament #1 : Gallery
  • Fashion Show: 'Handloom' #2 : Gallery
  • Reporting in Conflict Situation #1
  • Treatment schemes of RIMS, Lamphel
  • Home remedies for skin pigmentation
  • NE Chapter of ICSI inaugurated
  • Media credibility matter to uphold its sanctity
  • Setting down Jan 31 deadline : SC
  • Tangkhul Zingtun Longphang #1: Gallery
  • Wungramphy, Khamgonpou: eMing
  • NEROCA FC Vs Indian Arrows #3 : Gallery
  • Career option in Human Rights
  • Water conflicts over the Brahmaputra
  • PAC against Killing of Pravish: 17 Jan
  • Neiphiu Rio resigns from NPF
  • NPF-BJP Relationship : NPF clarifies
  • Consolidating the sporting heritage
  • Rising air and noise pollution
  • Kukis have equal right... : Neiphiu Rio
  • Rajnath reviews security in NE
  • Lafoi Shamda puthorkpa #2 : Gallery
  • Sangai Fest: Commercial Stalls #3: Gallery
  • The joy of living :: Poem
  • Bamboo a tree or grass ?
  • SELF Workshop on Leadership & Fulfilment
  • The Killing Fields :: News Timeline
  • Fight against corruption; we need Lokayukta
  • Hailing the role of drivers
  • Nangna Helli Nungshiba #2 :: eRang
  • Pung Chollom : Gallery
  • Wakhal Seireng :: Book Review
  • Imphal Jamboree by Global Shapers
  • Importance of regular health check-ups
  • Meetei demand for ST is Constitutional.. #2
  • Weapon Display organized at Moreh
  • Ex-Servicemen Rally organized
  • AR helps Orphanage & Old Age Home
  • Search of comprehensive culture & identity
  • List of MLA (Jan 2018) #1 : Gallery
  • Manipur Gas Today :: Android App
  • Imoinu Erat Thouni #3: Gallery
  • GNRC media fellowship announced
  • The Meiteis- Festival & celebration maniacs
  • How to make bridal mehndi long lasting
  • Governor's attention drawn to RIMS
  • Scientist develops prototype of electric car
  • Stereotypes about NE make people living..
  • Light Show at Loktak Lake #5 : Gallery
  • Candlelight vigil for Pravish : Gallery
  • Imbroglio of ethnic identity of Ranglong
  • Foundation For Excellence scholarship
  • Time Table - Class XII Exam 2018
  • Mail spoofing- Trickery by deception
  • Trial by fire
  • Call for solution before election
  • Villagers along Myanmar border get pass
  • Meetei Chanu 2017 #3 : Gallery
  • Art and Artist, A Creative Space
  • NEROCA FC Vs Indian Arrows #2 : Gallery
  • Ode to Thy Mellow Light :: Poem
  • Xmas with Meitei eche at Phaijol
  • Time Table - Class XI Exam 2018
  • Indo-Naga Talks 2017 :: News Timeline
  • IMC , now another hurdle to traffic mgmt
  • Setting aside two days for the people
  • Maring: Kummui Chaa-um : Gallery
  • Miss Manipur 2017 #5 : Gallery
  • Statehood Day Women's Polo Tournament
  • Time Table - HSLC Exam 2018
  • Bananas: Beauty's best friend
  • DPC for Follower at Manipur Police
  • Job Openings at JCRE Skill Solutions
  • The lost treasure
  • Nagas' Interests : Stand of NPF MSU
  • Nagaland polls on schedule: HM
  • Mukna Kangjei Tournament #2: Gallery
  • Keisham Manihar : Natyabhusan(Leela)
  • World Tourism Day #3: Gallery
  • Responsibility of protecting the environment
  • Phishing vs Vishing: The Verbal Challenge
  • BNHS Bi-monthly Program for Jan-Feb
  • Managing weight for preventing diabetes
  • Making democracy peoples' participatory
  • Progressing from media to SC
  • Manipur to set up modern food lab
  • Gaan Ngai @ Kakhulong Khun: Gallery
  • A trip to Moreh #2 : Gallery
  • How long catchy slogans keep hopes alive
  • Recycling of hospital waste-water
  • I am sometime or somewhere : Poem
  • Angami Zapu Phizo's Surreal 2017 AD
  • Film "Legacy Of King Narak" awarded
  • Of PM and our CM
  • Patronising the killing machines ?
  • Deferment of polls unlikely: Ravi
  • PM may visit Manipur in March
  • Emoinu Khoiramba @Koubru #2: Gallery
  • NEROCA FC Vs East Bengal #2: Gallery
  • Transform Colleges into Innovation Centres
  • New Delhi: World Book Fair 2018 :: Review
  • Cry Of A Dying River...12 :: Poem
  • Workshop on National Pension for NE
  • Law enforcers action - Well & good
  • Final pact yet to see light of day
  • Cold wave hits Manipur
  • Take out the cymbals, Manoharsai to stay
  • Indo-Naga Peace Process :: Articles
  • MaiOn - Scenes #2 :: eRang
  • Imoinu Erat Thouni #2: Gallery
  • Miss Manipur 2017 #4 : Gallery
  • Is Global Warming Natural or Anthropogenic
  • Prof Gangmumei Kamei: Legendary hero
  • Common Education System rally organized
  • DAMMS launched 2018 calendar
  • Chorus for 'Solution Not Election'
  • NEROCA FC Vs Indian Arrows #1 : Gallery
  • Gaan Ngai @Moirangkhom : Gallery
  • I was born healthy, I wanna die healthy
  • Practice peace & change the life
  • TSA Moreh Block installed
  • Cycle Rally: common education system
  • Ethics, medical profession & soaring fees
  • Meetei Chanu 2017 #2 : Gallery
  • Inner Line Permit (ILP) Demand :: Timeline
  • Meira rally for Pravish : Gallery
  • Accelerate momentum to endTB for SDGs
  • The call that can't be turned down
  • Live@MDU: New act with same old vibes
  • 1st Centre of Excellence- Electronics Skill
  • LED Lights installed by Loktak Station
  • NE tragedy: Policy failures & influx
  • Angaoba - Scenes #3 :: eRang
  • 51st Mr Manipur Contest 2017 #3 : Gallery
  • Result: Manipur Sangai Intl Digital salon
  • Use Swachhata App to Make Imphal No. 1
  • Career @ events and celebration
  • Night nourishing
  • Indo-Nepal Friendship: 25 yrs of Don Bosco
  • Understanding the indices of life
  • Poppy cultivation & drug cartels
  • Emoinu Khoiramba @Koubru #1: Gallery
  • Day 10: Closing of Sangai Fest #4 : Gallery
  • The creation of the universe, matter...
  • Mumbai: The city of dreams
  • Let this new year kill your new fears
  • Asian Waterbird Census: Count waterbirds
  • Looking for a better inclusive alternative
  • Coaching & commercialisation of education
  • New Year picnic @ Singda Dam : Gallery
  • Miss Manipur 2017 #3 : Gallery
  • Despite Stolen Dreams :: Book Rvw
  • Handloom Training @Hojai : Gallery
  • The Perfect timing
  • IGAR (south) meets Chief Minister
  • Communique from Neiphiu Rio on NDPP
  • Discussion on 'Rohingyas' at Delhi
  • In the process of making change- Manipur
  • Looking ahead from vantage point 2017
  • NEROCA FC Vs East Bengal #1: Gallery
  • World Tourism Day #2: Gallery
  • Immediate Manipur
  • Easter Peace :: Poem
  • You are what you eat
  • Goals for Girls: Leadership Summit @Delhi
  • Imoinu Erat Thouni #1: Gallery
  • Eyek Tamba :: Learn Manipuri script
  • Front Page Photo #6: Gallery
  • LUCIFER-X released debut EP
  • ..on the ocean of despondence :: Poem
  • Happy new year to State lovers
  • New year, new me: Re-designing self
  • Quiz Competition & Career Awareness
  • Calendar for the Year 2018 :: e-pao Tools
  • Gaan Ngai : Zeliangrong festival :: Flash
  • 51st Mr Manipur Contest 2017 #2 : Gallery
  • Crowd @ Flower Festival @Mao #4: Gallery
  • Gaan-Ngai Festival of Zelianglong
  • Goodbye 2017, welcome 2018
  • Cry of a dying river- 11 :: Poem
  • Free Heart OPD & Echocardiogram
  • Peoples' mandate: what next?
  • Understanding Manipur and its history
  • Kwatha (Indo-Myanmar Border) #2: Gallery
  • Thang Ta @Parlimentary : Gallery
  • A Hymn for Goddess Emoinu
  • Bamboo for poverty alleviations
  • A costly peace deal
  • The song of the speech-impaired : Poem
  • Opportunity for NE Youth @Delhi/NCR
  • Chief Of Army Staff visits Manipur
  • Waiting for another begining
  • NE: Little change albeit promises galore
  • Flower Festival @ Mao #3 : Gallery
  • Miss Manipur 2017 #2 : Gallery
  • Why the Ngamu Fish ?
  • Unsung heroes
  • Wishing a goa in Manipur!
  • Handloom Weaver at Nagaon, Assam
  • Reminder on role of media & political party
  • Hospital death: Deliver justice if delivery ..
  • Restricted Holidays 2018 : Govt of Manipur
  • Lourembam Bedabati : Sangeetbhusan
  • Culturals @ Mera Houchongba #3 : Gallery
  • Handloom Training @Assam : Gallery
  • Ras Leela @Parliment committee: Gallery
  • List of RIST popular talks during 2014-2017
  • 'Good Governance Day' & Manipur
  • Christmas eve @ CCpur #2 : Gallery
  • Public Holidays 2018 : Govt of Manipur
  • Pui Thangamliu #2 :: eRang
  • Christmas Carol @ Lamphel : Gallery
  • Royal Crematorium at Bangkok #2 : Gallery
  • Christmas Carol at Namdulong : Gallery
  • General Holidays 2018 : Govt of Manipur
  • 3rd Flower Festival @ Mao #2 : Gallery
  • Lafoi Shamda puthorkpa #1 : Gallery
  • Nupilal Ningsing Lamjen : Gallery
  • cYK_rb TwaI :: Seireng
  • Manipur Sangai Festival 2016 #7 : Ooba
  • Manipuri Calendar for 2018 : Download it
  • Old Manipuri Movie #1 :: eRang Classic
  • SPONSORED ADS