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regular-article-logo Friday, 19 July 2024

From Maidaan to Jaadugar: 6 Bollywood football movies to binge on during Euro 2024 season

Ajay Devgn portrays the role of Indian coach Syed Abdul Rahim in Amit Ravindernath Sharma’s sports drama Maidaan

Agrima Tikader Calcutta Published 15.06.24, 04:51 PM
(L-R) Ajay Devgn in Maidaan, Amitabh Bachchan in Jhund.

(L-R) Ajay Devgn in Maidaan, Amitabh Bachchan in Jhund. IMDb

As the football scene is hotting up again with your favourite footballers competing at UEFA Euro 2024, which kicked off in Munich of Germany on June 14, celebrate the beautiful game with six Bollywood football movies that you can catch on Amazon Prime Video, ZEE5, Netflix and Disney+ Hotstar.

Maidaan (2024)

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Where to watch: Prime Video

The recently released biopic follows an illustrious chapter in the history of Indian football. Ajay Devgn portrays the role of legendary Indian coach Syed Abdul Rahim, who inspired the national football team to make history at the 1962 Asian Games. Backed by Boney Kapoor, the Amit Ravindernath Sharma-directed sports drama also stars Rudranil Ghosh, Gajraj Rao and Priyamani. Starting off with the humiliating 10-0 defeat against Yugoslavia at the 1952 Summer Olympics in Helsinki, Maidaan follows the phoenix-like rise of the Indian team, guided by their iconic coach, in Jakarta.

Jhund (2022)

Where to watch: ZEE5

This sports biopic on the life of social worker Vijay Barse shows how football can change lives. Helmed by Nagraj Manjule, Jhund sees Amitabh Bachchan as a retired sports teacher who ends up impacting the lives of children from a slum area with football. When Amitabh’s character notices teenagers from the slum while away their time near his neighbourhood in Nagpur, he aims to channelise their energy by setting up the Slum Soccer NGO, making a difference in their lives in the process.

Jaadugar (2022)

Where to watch: Netflix

Jitendra Kumar plays the role of a reluctant footballer in this Netflix sports drama. The Javed Jaffrey-starrer film, directed by Sameer Saxena, is set in the small town of Neemuch in Madhya Pradesh. Jaadugar showcases the real-life football craze of the people in the town. Jitendra plays Meenu Narang, a character who does not fit into the football-loving populace of the town as he is more interested in becoming a magician. However, life has surprises in store for Meenu — he ends up leading an underdog football team to victory to secure the hand of the woman he loves.

Tu Hai Mera Sunday (2016)

Where to watch: Disney+ Hotstar

Starring Barun Sobti, Shahana Goswami, Avinash Tiwary, Vishal Malhotra, Rasika Dugal, Maanvi Gagroo, Nahul Bhalla, Jay Upadhay and Shiv Subrahmanyam, is a romantic comedy centred around football. A group of five friends are forced to find a new place to play football on their time off when a politician bans football on the beaches of Mumbai. Directed by Milind Dhaimade, the film shows how each of the characters resorts to playing football to combat the difficulties they face in their lives.

Dhan Dhana Dhan Goal (2007)

Where to watch: Netflix

One of the first films in Bollywood to focus on football is this sports drama helmed by Vivek Agnihotri. Starring John Abraham, Bipasha Basu, Boman Irani and Arshad Warsi, the film focuses on racism and the racial identity of Indians living in the UK. Sunny (Abraham), a promising footballer, goes against his father’s wishes of playing for Southall Football Club, which is an all-Asian club. He faces racism at the Aston Football Club where he plays and eventually fulfils his father’s dreams by leading Southall FC to victory against Aston FC.

Hip Hip Hurray (1984)

Where to watch: Prime Video, ZEE5

The Prakash Jha-helmed classic stars Raj Kiran and Deepti Naval and follows a screenplay by Gulzar. Sandeep Chowdhary (Kiran), a computer engineer, is employed as a temporary sports teacher at a Ranchi school. He is faced with many challenges at the school including the apathetic principal played by Ram Gopal Bajaj and the leader of the unruly gang of students Raghu (Nikhil Bhagat). Sandeep ends up putting together a football team including Raghu and coaches the boys to victory.

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