The All India Football Federation (AIFF) has named former Croatian footballer Igor Stimac as the new head coach of the Indian men’s football team on Thursday evening. The technical committee came to the conclusion after interviewing four shortlisted candidates which also includes Abert Roca, two-time South Korean World Cupper Lee Min-sung, and former Sweden coach Hakan Ericson.
“The technical committee has chosen Igor Stimac as the Indian football coach. He gave a splendid presentation and his experience speaks volumes. Stimac has an impressive knowledge of Indian football and we found him as the perfect choice,” said Shyam Thapa, the chairman of the technical committee to Sportstar. Igor served as the coach of the Croatian national team from 2012-2013.
The post for the head coach of the Indian national football team was left vacant after British tactician Stephen Constantine resigned from the post following India’s group stage exit from the AFC Asian Cup in the United Arab Emirates earlier this year. Since then, there have been many speculations about who might fill in his boots, with the Croat getting the job ahead of his competitors.
The European was part of the Croatian team reached the semi-finals of the 1998 FIFA World Cup in France. Igor enjoyed a 17-year illustrious club career during which he played for clubs in his native country, Spain and England. Having played 53 matches for the national team as a defender, he started his managerial career back in 2005.
During his reign as the coach of the Croatian national team, he guided the nation to the fourth place in the world rankings, their best ever in 15 years. He has worked with several Croat stars like Luka Modric, Dejan Lovren and Ivan Rakitic, who were responsible for the country’s second place finish in the 2018 FIFA World Cup. Igor’s first assignment with the Indian National team will be the King’s Cup in Thailand.
#Football | Former Croatia manager Igor Stimac is the new COACH of the Indian men's football team!
Stimac played for the national team on 53 occasions and was a part of the bronze-winning 1998 FIFA World Cup team. pic.twitter.com/AIQDVE3s5R
— The Bridge (@TheBridge_IN) May 9, 2019