As India’s search for a football head coach ended with the appointment of former Croatian footballer Igor Stimac, All India Football Federation (AIFF) General Secretary Kushal Das said he is “delighted” over the conclusion of the search and stated that no stone was left unturned to find the “right man” for the job. “We are delighted to have concluded the search for the new India coach. At the end of the day, I can assure you that no stone has been left unturned to find the right man for the job ahead of what is a crucial period for the national team,” Goal.com quoted Das, as saying. “The AIFF received more than 280 applications for the job which were all duly considered in a streamlined process,” he added.
Finding the ‘right man’ for the job was a lengthy process as there were 280 applications initially which were cut down to approximately 120. Later, they were divided into four categories based on their previous coaching experience. “The coaches with previous national team coaching experience at the highest level were put in Pot A. These included coaches who have overseen World Cup or continental level qualifying campaigns or other continental level tournaments such as the AFC Asian Cup, Euro etc,” he said.
“Those with national team coaching experience at a lower level were placed in Pot B while those who have coached at the club level were placed in Pot C. Candidates with coaching experience only at the youth and academy level were put in Pot D,” Das added. Das further enunciated that they kept in mind the requirements of the Indian team to move forward. “We have firm belief in the rational process that we followed,” Das said.