After days of keeping it under wraps, the Executive Committee of the All India Football Federation announced the appointment of Igor Stimac as the Head Coach of the Men’s Senior National Team Coach on a two-year contract.
Stimac comes with an experience of over 18 years in coaching, structuring, and developing football and players in Croatia, and internationally.
As a Coach, Stimac’s major achievement was guiding Croatia to qualify for the FIFA World Cup Brazil 2014.
During his tenure as the national coach of Croatia, he handed national team debuts to the likes of Mateo Kovacic, Ante Rebic, Alen Halilovic, and Ivan Perisic, amongst others.
He also played a pivotal role in developing likes of Dario Srna, Daniel Subasic, Ivan Strinic, Kovacic, Perisic, and other players. His last assignment was with Al-Shahania Club in Qatar.
As a player, he was part the of the Croatia National squad which finished third in the FIFA World Cup France 1998, and a member of the Croatia national squad which qualified for the quarter-finals of the Euro 1996 in England.
Besides, he was also a part of the Yugoslavia U-19 National Team which won the FIFA U-20 World Cup Chile 1987.
" “Igor is the right candidate to coach the Blue Tigers. I welcome him on board. Indian Football is going through a transition, and I am confident his vast experience will guide us to higher echelons.”" - Praful Patel, President, All India Football Federation said:
According to Kushal Das, the general secretary of AIFF, Indian Football would benefit immensely under Igor Stimac.
"“His (Stimac) credentials as a coach, and experience as a player are sure to add immense value to the players, and the Indian Football ecosystem. The momentum gained needs to be sustained.”" - Kushal Das, General Secretary, AIFF
Mr. Shyam Thapa, a former India International player, and currently the Chairman of the Technical Committee mentioned that “Mr. Stimac’s recommendation was unanimous.”
"“All the members of the Technical Committee including the AIFF Technical Director Mr. Isac Doru were immensely impressed, and convinced about him being best suited for the job. He is a World Cupper, and has guided Croatia to World Cup as a coach. Who else could have been a better candidate?”" - Shyam Thapa, Chairman, AIFF Technical Committee
‘“He also impressed us with his extensive research on Indian Football,” added Thapa.
Mr. Stimac’s first assignment will be the Kings Cup in Buriram, Thailand where the Blue Tigers play Curacao in their first match on June 5.
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