Baichung up close on home turf

Updated: 25 February 2007 08:27 IST

India's soccer star Baichung Bhutia is spending some time in his remote village after his tour of the English Club League.

Baichung up close on home turf

Ravlana, Sikkim:

The World Cup is just days away and India's top footballer will be making his debut during the tournament, not as a player but as a TV commentator. Currently, Baichung Bhutia is relaxing at home in Sikkim. The village near Ravlanca is tucked away in the remote foothills of the Himalayas. a€œIt's always good to be back home. It's beautiful, as that rural part of you, that remote part of you is still there and that's what you like about it,a€ remarked Bhutia. The path to becoming India's top footballer was not easy and Baichung says the English weather has made him more mature. a€œIt was good for me. I think it makes you more experienced as a person, it gives you more ideas of football. It worked well for mea€. At 25, Baichung is planning to return home after his contract with Bury FC expires in July and he is waiting for offers. a€œMost of the strikers are playing well at 29,30,31 years of age. So I still have time. I'll be looking forward to that, coming back to India in August. I want to play the game well and enjoy it,a€ said the keen sportsperson. Contrary to reports that football playing clubs are not doing too well financially, Baichung feels players are being taken care of. a€œIf you look into the Indian financial status, the amount of money players are getting here in the country is alright. There's a good chance of football doing well. It needs a slight change in management and marketing but it'll change,a€ felt the optimistic lad. At the end of the month, Baichung will leave for Dubai to join as an expert for the World Cup coverage. a€œIt's the first time I would be doing this kind of a thing. I'm really happy about ita€. And even before he's there, he seems sure of his favourites. a€œArgentina, France and Italy will do well because of the group they are in. Thierry Henry could be a big star, Ronaldinho of Brazil could come out good.a€ Baichung will spend a few days in the hills with his family and friends before he starts considering fresh offers.

Topics : Football
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