While the All India Football Federation (AIFF) have sought legal advice from a law firm based in Delhi as to how to see the back of Bob Houghton as the Indian national coach given the serious “racist” allegations leveled against him and the alleged “derogatory” remarks made towards the governing body for football in the country, the Englishman denied all charges raised and pointed at his experience of over 30 years at the highest level as a proof of his high standards of professionalism.
The Executive Committee of the AIFF on the suggestion of the technical committee expressed their disappointment with the performance at the Asian Cup and believed that the large sums of money put in the preparations were completely wasted in every manner.
Also the fact that Dinesh Nair, who was the fourth official in the India versus Yemen match back in October last year, had submitted a written complaint against Houghton claiming that the chief coach called him a “Bastard Indian Referee.”
Reacting to all of the above, Houghton mentioned that all the accusations didn’t hold much ground and gave a sound reply for each of it.
“Further to reports in the media that I made a racist remark to a fourth official last year, I wish to categorically deny that allegation.
"Furthermore, remarks made by former team manager Pradeep Chowdhary, are the exact opposite of his comments made at a dinner directly after the match, where in front of my staff he called the official in question (Dinesh Nair) “ a bad man” and insisted I had said no such thing. My staff are prepared to confirm Chowdhary’s comments when and if required.
"Regarding the other allegation s regarding my criticism of the AIFF during the Asian Cup, my comments were limited only to facilities for football in India. They refect exactly the comments made by Asian Football Confederation President Mohammed Bin Hammam on a visit to India during my time as head coach, when he described India as "100 years behind" other Asian countries.
"I would also like to point out that I have worked in international football at the highest level for 30 years before my arrival in India in 2006, having worked in Africa, China, the United States, Uzbekistan, the Middle East and in many European countries and staffed coaching courses for the AFC through out Asia with out any such nonsensical allegations being made.
"I have no doubt that ALL the players and staff that I have worked with in India would confirm that I do not have a racist bone in my body and have treated all of them with the utmost respect. The only exception would be Pradeep Chowdhary, who walked out of his position as National Team manager just prior to the Asian Cup 2011 after an argument with me. I refer those who would wish to see a reflection of this man’s standing among the Indian Team members to the FPAI (Football Players Association of India) website directly after his walk out.
"Finally, I look forward to taking a young and experimental Indian Team to the AFC Challenge Cup qualifiers next month and then returning to our senior National Team players for the World Cup 2014 Qualifiers in June this year," said Houghton.