Blue Pilgrims plans 3D tifo display for Chhetri and co.

The fan group has planned to do something that has never been done before in Indian football.

Indian football fans in high spirit and showing their support during an Intercontinental Cup match.   -  Prashant Nakwe

Fans are often considered the twelfth man of a football team and the Blue Pilgrims, the dedicated fan club of the Indian football team, is set to take that tag up a notch when India takes on Kenya in Sunday's Intercontinental Cup final. 

“We're doing something that has never been done in Indian football before. We're planning on presenting a 30 feet 3D tifo for the final,” one of the Blue Pilgrims, who has come to Mumbai all the way from Bengaluru, tells Sportstar.

Blue Pilgrims, a fan group supporting India football team preparing for Intercontinental Cup final.   -  VIVEK BENDRE


The group is planning on hoisting the tifo bearing a tiger’s face when the Indian team walks onto the pitch prior to the start of the match. “We want to send out the message to the team that the fans are right behind them. We will always back them regardless where they play or how they play,” says another ‘pilgrim’, who’s an ardent East Bengal fan.    

The Blue Pilgrims, which is an amalgamation of football fans from across cities and clubs, has been a major driving force in the Intercontinental Cup so far. They've turned up in huge numbers and with their Viking claps, player chants and renditions of ‘Vande Matram’, they’ve truly sparked life into the stadium and served as a massive source of motivation for the players. 

They’ve also planned some special chants for the final and come Sunday, they’re going to play a very crucial role in spurring the team on against Kenya.


Extensive measures taken to ensure proper playing conditions

Mumbai Football Arena trustee, Dinesh Nair, said the organisers have taken extensive measures to ensure proper playing conditions, even if there’s downpour on Sunday. “We’ve used a method called aerating, which makes tiny holes and allows water to drip into the soil. Other than that, we also have a well-functioning water harvesting system that would drain the water out,” he said.  “Apart from our groundsmen, we’ve also hired 30 extra staff who are equipped with sponges and buckets to deal with excess water,” he added.


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